Military will remain in the forest until the waters become clean – Nitiwul

Dominic Nitiwul has been the Minister of Defence since 2017

Defence Minister, Dominic Nitiwul has said that the security taskforce deployed to stop illegal small scale mining (Galamsey) will continue to stay in the forest until the water bodies become clean again.

He said this at a press conference in Accra on Wednesday May 19.

“The soldiers will continue to monitor to ensure we have clean waters,” he said.

The taskforce as part of efforts to deal with the issue of galamsey burnt some 20 excavators while working in Atiwa in the Eastern Region on Sunday, May 16.

These equipment included that Xtra Gold Mining Limited.

But Nana Asante, Secretary to the governing New Patriotic Party (NPP’s) Women’s Organiser, Madam Kate Gyamfuah, whose mining equipment were destroyed by the security taskforce, has said the company, the Xtra Gold Mining Limited is not engaged in illegal small scale mining (Galamsey).

Mr Asante said “So it’s not like we are enclosed in one area and doing unscrupulous activities. I can tell you there is not even a single thing we are doing that is illegal.”

“So there is nothing that shows that we are causing havoc to the environment. Even the pits, we refill,” he told journalists in Accra.

Minister for Lands and Natural Resources, Samuel Abu Jinapor has toured the areas where illegal small scale mining (galamsey) are ongoing in the country.

He said the tour was meant to ascertain for himself the current progress of Operation Halt.

He admitted that what he observed was daunting.

“Today 18th May 2021, I was accompanied by the Airforce Commander and the General Officer commanding Operation Halt to undertake an aerial tour of River Oda, Brim, Offin, and Pra in the Ashanti, Eastern, Central and Western Regions.

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“This tour was necessitated to ascertain for myself the current progress of Operation Halt, I must say what I observed was daunting.

“However, the government of Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo is determined and committed in our resolve to protect the environment and reclaim degraded land.

“I also had the opportunity to interact with communities along the river bodies and entreated all to support government’s ongoing efforts to sanitise our forests and water bodies.

“A concerted effort by all stakeholders is the only way to overcome this menace.”

By Laud Nartey||Ghana