A former Director of the Minerals Commission, Richard Kofi Afenu, says he disagrees with calls for the government to ban small-scale mining in the country.
According to him, banning small-scale mining is not the answer to illegal mining otherwise known as galamsey.
“I do not think a ban on small-scale mining would yield the desired result of fighting illegal mining. In 2017, a ban was imposed on mining. The question is, were are we able to root out illegal mining?”
He argues that the astronomical increase in gold production when a ban on mining was imposed in 2018, was enough evidence that a new ban will not yield the required results but will only make room for illegal mining to prevail.
Speaking to Citi News, Mr. Afenu wants the government to provide lasting solutions, including the stringent enforcement of laws that govern mining in the country.
“We need to look at the drivers, and what is causing illegal mining in the country. Let’s tackle the root cause. Let us see the powers that are backing the illegal miners”.
Already, analysts have warned Ghana risks being food and water insecure as the activities of illegal miners continue to destroy water bodies and ravage farmlands.
Religious groups, Civil Society Groups such as Green Advocate Ghana among others have called on the government to ban small-scale mining in the country.
These groups posit that both illegal and legal small-scale mining had destroyed biodiversity, hence the need for its restoration.