Takoradi, May 17, GNA - One Chinese national and three Togolese have been arrested by Operation Vanguard Joint Task Force at Broniamah, a community in the Amenfi Central District of the Western Region for indulging in illegal mining.
The suspects, identified as Lin Chanquo, 44 year old Chinese, 28 year old Kwame Musah, 48 year old Kombete Kudjo and 21 year old Ano Nabro, all Togolese, were arrested together with 27 year old Osumanu Yakubu from Tamale and 25 year old Inusah Issah from Garu Tempane in the Upper East region.
Squadron Leader Robinson Omane Agyei told the Ghana News Agency that the Operation Vanguard Team chanced upon one immobilised Hyundai excavator with chassis number K3R000033 on the site and also seized one Liungong excavator with chassis number CLG0956DC052066 and conveyed them to the Wassa Amenfi District Assembly.
Other items seized by the team include; one locally manufactured single barrel gun, one Toyota Hilux pickup truck with registration number GT 8131-13, one) water pumping machine, and eleven (11) mobile phones.
He said the suspects, together with the seized items were handed over to the Manso Amenfi central police station for further investigations and possible prosecution.
Earlier, the Western Region Forward Operating Base (FOB) arrested 12 Ghanaians in the Furi Forest, Kutukrom in the Prestea Huni Valley district of the Region.
The FOB, he added grounded 12 excavators, seized other mining equipment and handed them over to the Prestea District Police Station for further investigation.
He said with this arrest, the total number of arrest stood at 1,205, with 5,134 changfa's grounded, 74 vehicles and 78 motorbikes seized, 107 arms and 2,344 ammunition seized, 228 excavators seized with 312 immobilised and 432 water pumping machines seized with 977 grounded.
The Squadron Leader said Operation Vanguard continued to perform its task diligently and expressed worry at some media propaganda to smear the work of the Task Force.
"We have always been asking for evidence when allegations are made against the task force to be able to deal with the bad nuts amongst us. All we hear are allegations without evidence", he added.
Squadron Leader Omane Agyei stressed the need for total support to sanitise the mining sector for the benefit of all, "We also call on the support of well-meaning Ghanaians not to relent on giving credible information, we must save Ghana now for a better future.”