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    A report does not mean defame people – Albert Quarm’s lawyer to Frimpong-Boateng

    A member of Joseph Albert Quarm’s legal team, Vida Acheampong, has chastised Professor Frimpong-Boateng for authoring a report which she claims falls outside his mandate as head of the erstwhile Inter-Ministerial Committee on Illegal Mining (IMCIM).

    According to her, the heart surgeon should have reported on the numerous achievements of the various projects implemented by the committee rather than dragging the hard-earned reputation of individuals into the mud.

    “If the President asks you for a report it does not mean defame people in the report. If even you look at the authority of the inter-ministerial committee, they were to vet and verify legally registered small-scale mining and to regularise their activities,” she said on June 12.

    Speaking on Top Story on Joy FM, she explained that the committee had the opportunity to elaborate on key issues and problems encountered in the fight against illegal mining rather than touching on issues outside its mandate.

    “You report on the things you have done, the achievement you have made; things like Prof Quarm camping delegates and attempting to bribe them, in what way are they related to the core mandate of the Inter-Ministerial Committee?

    “Some of the things he wrote were needless, completely needless because if you look at their mandate and some of the things he wrote you will wonder what the Professor was writing,” she said.

    Madam Acheampong stressed that “We believe that if he had made extensive consultation, perhaps with his lawyers, they would have advised him that it is dangerous to put such things down without cross-checking them”.

    She added that “if you make allegations that a former member of the Mineral Commission acquired several mineral concessions, these are facts you can cross-check. You can easily conduct a search with the Minerals Commission … if you go there right now you will realize the Honorable Albert never had any concession registered in his name. So what was the basis of the good Professor’s allegations.”

    Meanwhile, Prof Quarm has taken legal action against former Environment Minister, Professor Kwabena Frimpong-Boateng over the publication of the report on galamsey. He is accusing him of defamation and demanding GHS 2.5 million in damages.

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