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"We Have Made Gains In Our Fight Against Illegal Small-Scale Mining" - Abu Jinapor (PICS)

The Minister for Lands and Natural Resources, Hon. Samuel A. Jinapor says his Ministry has made some considerable gains in the fight against Illegal Small Scale Mining over the past few months.

He said " We have come to a point where we can reasonably be encouraged that the proper framework and the building blocks  have been put in place to deal with this age old menace"

He made this known in an interview with Thelma Tackie on GTV's flagship programme, "Breakfast Show", on Tuesday, 18th January, 2022.

The Minister mentioned two fundamental things that marks these gains saying that the Ministry has been able to put in place the necessary reforms in the regulatory regime for the mining sector of the country.

Hon. Jinapor added that "the enforcement mechanisms where you get to find matters to do with Operation Halt, efforts being made by the Regional Security Councils at the forefront of enforcement and even the extent of segregating the enforcement by declaring mining in forest reserves and river bodies as red zones are pillars on which I can say we have made gains"

In his responses, the Minister also admitted that there is still more to do as his Ministry has not gotten to a satisfactory situation on the fight.

He stated " We are not out of the woods yet.We have not gotten to a satisfactory point where we can say we have a full grip of illegal Small Scale Mining in our country. I will be the first to admit that 5 to 8 or even 10 years would still not be enough to rid our country off these llegalities in the lands and natural resources sector completely"

Hon. Jinapor on this note declared that this year, he and his team are going to be relentless and totally committed, ensuring that all the measures put in place are duly enforced even in the sight of obvious challenges.

He went on to disclose that the Ghana Armed Forces has been able to secure some night vision equipments, all in efforts to come hard in the fight against illegalities this year.

Touching on the discovery of iron ore and other minerals in the country, Hon. Jinapor opined that the plan of government is to ensure that the country has an integrated iron industry which will ensure the retention of the full value chain of these minerals.

He said the government together with the Minerals Commission and the Precious Minerals Mining Company ( PMMC) are almost done with a gold refinery that is underway in the country. All these he said is to ensure that "we add value to the Lands and natural resources of our country".

On the Forestry sub sector, the Minister call on all and sundry to massively support the up coming tree planting exercise dubbed "Green Ghana Day". He urged all to go out and plant trees come June, 2022, disclosing that 80% of seedlings planted last year are doing well.

" We cannot call on Ghanaians if those we planted last year are not doing well. That would be a waste of efforts and time. But thankfully we have a robust monitoring team in place and I am told by the Forestry sector that even up to 80% of those seedlings planted last year survived"

He assured that this year's edition of Green Ghana is going to be even bigger with the planting of 20 million trees and therefore called on the media to get involved on this all important exercise.

" I'm calling on all media outlets to partner government on the planting of these 20 million seedlings"

Speaking on the Lands Sector, the Minister said that one of the key priorities of the Ministry which is being vigriously pursued is the digitization of the records of the Lands Commission.

He said issues that has to do with land administration are of grave importance to him even more than galamsey, stressing that the consequences of land administration are enormous.

Below are some pictures:

Story by: Joshua Kwabena Smith



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