Govt is aggressively revamping Community Mining Scheme – Lands Minister

As part of efforts to regulate small scale mining in the country in order to deal with the illegal ones (Galamsey), the government is aggressively revamping the Community Mining Scheme (CMS) across the country, Minister of Lands and Natural Resources, Samuel Abu Jinapor, has said.

He said the government is convinced that one of the tools needed to regulate the sector is the CMS.

Speaking at a press conference in Accra on Thursday October 13, the Damongo Lawmaker explained that this type of mining takes into account concerns of the environment and also adheres to the protocols of environmental preservations.

He said “we are aggressively revamping Community Mining Scheme across the country. We have come to the firm conclusion that one of the tools we should deploy in order to be able to regulate the industry of small scale mining is the community mining scheme.

“When I say Community Mining Scheme I am talking about Community Mining Scheme which has regard to the environment and which adherers to the strict protocols of environmental perseverations. Those are the community mining schemes we are rolling out and we are really moving forward with them. They are supposed to be owned by the Communities.”

Recently, the Presidency announced that 82,000 jobs have been created out of the CMS.

Out of this number, 60,000 direct jobs and 22,800 indirect jobs have been created, the seat of government, the Jubilee House, further stated.

In a tweet, the Jubilee House said “There have been 82,800 jobs created out of the 15 legal CMS, including 60,000 direct jobs and 22,800 indirect jobs. —Through legal mining, the government will keep adding jobs.”

The governing New Patriotic Party (NPP) expressed optimism that this initiative will deal with the illegal small Scale mining (Galamsey) menace.

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The party’s Director of Communications, Mr Richard Ahiagbah said “This is how we will win the fight against galamsey …Let’s support the government to do more.”

On the issue of Galamsey, President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo has told the National House of Chiefs that the task to protect the lands and the environment from the effect of illicit small scale mining is a joint responsibility between the government and the traditional authorities.

Mr Akufo-Addo explained during a meeting with the Chiefs in Kumasi on Wednesday October 5 that 80 per cent of the lands in Ghana  are in the custody of the chiefs.

This means that they have a role to play in protecting the resource, he said.

He said “80 per cent of the lands in this country continue to be under your custody, much of it having been acquired through the blood and sacrifices of your ancestors. The reminder of 20 per cent which I hold in trust of the people of Ghana, derived from state acquisition  from you. What this means is that ultimately, the welfare of the state of the lands is our  joint responsibility, although by statute the minerals in the soil belong to the president in trust for the people.”

 

The chiefs on their part assured Mr Akufo-Addo that they are solidly behind his administration to apply appropriate measures against all persons involved in Galamsey in the country.

President of the National House of Chiefs, Ogyeahohoo Yaw Gyeb indicated that galamsey is having a negative effect on the environment and also threatens revenue mobilsation in the country hence, their resolve to support the President and government in fighting it.

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He said “your relentless war against forest degradation and illegal mining in Ghana is of great importance to Ghanaians especially we the chiefs.

“The effects of illegal mining on the environment threaten the survival of water bodies , farmlands, cocoa industry and even encouraging school dropouts, this undermines the revenue mobilsation drive in the country.

“In view of this development [the Chiefs] are solidly behind your administration to apply the appropriate sanctions against persons who are engaged in the practice illegal mining irrespective of their status.”

By Laud Nartey|3news.com|Ghana