Media houses in Ghana have joined forces in the fight against a canker that has bedeviled the country for years now, threatening the very existence of its citizens. This canker, illegal mining popularly known as galamsey has destroyed vast tracts of land and several water bodies.
Some communities living close to these water bodies now have to depend on sachet water for cooking, drinking, bathing and other household chores.
Following the sheer devastation left behind by the galamsey, media houses in Ghana have come together to form a group called Media Coalition Against Galamsey with the aim of mounting sustained pressure on government and related bodies to end galamsey in Ghana.
The group is embarking on a one million signature collection campaign to petition the president, Nana Akufo Addo and the speaker of parliament Prof. Mike Ocquaye to take action against illegal mining activities in the country.
The one million signature petition is to draw government’s attention to the fact that the media is solidly behind government to fight Galamsey. Whatever decision government takes on galamsey, the coalition says it will support government fully.
Chief Executive Officer of Graphic Communications Group, Ken Ashigbey challenged journalist to put pressure on government in ensuring that the fight is won.
Minister for Lands and Natural Resources, John Peter Amewu also challenged the media to wage a vigorous war against Galamsey after giving the Chinese Galamsey operators three weeks to quit the illegal mining. He regretted, activities of foreigners have even compounded the situation.
Peter Amewu hinted government has constituted a six member committee to look into Galamsey issues.
Information Minister, Mustapha Abdul Hamid says government has no excuse not to clamp down on galamsey, adding it was time to re-engineer a national program on ethics.
He said government is committed to finding lasting solutions to galamsey.
Speakers including the president of the Ghana Journalist Association, Graphic Communications, New Times Corporation, PRINPAG and GBC all entreated journalist to expose the people behind galamsey in the country, calling on all religious leaders as well as traditional leaders to join the fight.
By Martin Asiedu-Dartey|3news.com|Ghana