Florence Afriyie Mensah, GNA
Donkoto-Lineso (W/R), July 1, GNA – Professor Kwabena Frimpong-Boateng, Minister of Environment, Science, Technology and Innovation has underlined government’s unswerving determination to ensure that small-scale mining activities conform to environmental safety standards.
“Mining should be safer for the miners, the environment and future generations.
“We want to preserve our water bodies and soil, to use them sustainably and be able to hand over something meaningful to the generations to come.”
Prof. Frimpong-Boateng said this during a tour of the Ekomyeya Small-scale Mining Centre at Donkoto-Lineso, near Bibiani in the Western Region.
He was there to acquaint himself with how things were done at the place, assess the safety of shafts and the general operation.
This comes as the government hints at lifting the ban on small-scale mining.
The Minister expressed big worry about the rate of the destruction of the country’s forest and said that could not continue.
Ghana was losing its forest cover at a rate fast than it was regenerating and he warned that if strong action was not taken, there would be no more virgin forest in the country.
It is estimated that about 5,000 excavators are in the forest digging and destroying the vegetation.
Prof. Frimpong-Boateng said they were deepening the engagement with small-scale miner associations to promote responsible mining and to stop the recklessness.
Ekomyeya Small-scale Mining Centre, started operations 12 years ago and the miners have been given old shafts built in 1927 by some colonial mining companies.
The company was employing in excess of 200 workers before the ban.