Government has suspended the issuance of mining licenses until illegal mining, also known as Galamsey, is effectively tackled, the Vice President, Mahamadu Bawumia has said.
It is unclear whether the suspension in the interim only affects the small scale mining sector.
There has been a massive public outcry against the menace following media campaigns led by Citi FM, other media houses and civil society organisations.
Speaking at a Town Hall Meeting today [Monday] organized by Accra-based Joy FM to mark the government’s first 100 days in office, Dr. Bawumia revealed that, government had taken a major step by halting the issuance of mining licenses to address the problem.
“We have suspended the issuance of mining licenses so that we can restructure the sector,” the Vice President said.
Dr. Bawumia further revealed that, government had “developed a five year multilateral mining integrated project to improve the management of small scale mining to protect the environment”
He was however quick to add that, government had identified prospective areas for small scale mining, where “we will then direct the small scale miners to those particular areas so that they are not just mining haphazardly.”
The move, he said, is to allow Ghanaians to mine in a regulated and sustainable manner under the five-year multilateral mining integrated project.
“We are also banning mining around water bodies and making sure there is surveillance around those water bodies and also establishing a processing plant for gold processing.”
Ghana’s fight against illegal mining, popularly known as galamsey, is not a witch-hunt against Chinese nationals, President Nana Akufo-Addo has said.
Speaking in Obomeng Kwahu, Eastern Region on Saturday, the President asserted that, the law which criminalizes illegal mining will be enforced irrespective of any nationality.
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