The Ghana National Association of Small Scale Miners says it has empirical evidence that foreigners, particularly Chinese nationals are prospecting for gold in mining communities despite the ban on small scale mining.
Speaking to journalists in Accra, president of the association, Michael Kwadwo Peprah, alleged that some security operatives were aiding some foreigners to undertake mining activities under the guise of reclamation.
According to him, foreign companies grease the palms of these security operatives with lump sums of money in exchange of protection to undertake their illegal activities.
“We have sufficient evidence that the military officers dispatched to the mining communities to curtail the activities of illegal miners are taking monies from these foreigners and allow them to mine.
“It appears the ban on small scale mining and galamsey were imposed on local companies and Ghanaians who indulge in galamsey,” Kwadwo Peprah lamented.
While calling on government to, as a matter of urgency, lift the ban on small scale mining, Kwadwo Peprah warned that members of his association could be force to take the law into their own hands, if government fails to heed to their concerns.
In order to help protect water bodies and save the forests from depletion, the Akufo-Addo-led government launched a war on illegal small-scale mining (galamsey) which resulted in a six-month moratorium on all forms of small-scale mining activities in the country.
But the small-scale miners believe that the modus operandi adopted by the government is wrong. They believe the government must delink galamsey from small-scale miners who operate legally – those who operate with license – in this endeavor.