Kwame Okyere Darko a Business Development Consultant and an advocate against illegal mining,. has said the fight against galamsey was not real.
He wants the president to admit he failed in the fight against illegal mining.
“This Galamsey fight is the biggest environmental scam in Sub Saharan Africa…it is not the illegality of it but the collection of the problem also became an avenue for people to rob the state and also rob the people,” he said.
His comment comes after the President dissolved the Inter- Ministerial Committee against Illegal mining.
Contributing to discussions on the 3FM’s Sunrise Morning Show, Kwame Okyere Darko said the Seizure of excavators made the fight problematic.
“I have had people come to me from Tarkwa to say that chief they seized my excavator, two, three months down the line I saw my excavator on another site, when I quickly went there to take photo and try and blow up the issue the next time we were there they are putting fire in the excavator and it was burnt”.
According to him, Ghana has gone backwards and nobody should come and do politics with the galamsey fight.
“ In going from bad to worse we have also taken a lot of state funds to go from bad to worse and I don’t think people must walk free, people must be punished because this is not a political party assets it is a country asset and if you look at the whole thing did we actually interrogate this illegality and put up a proper plan for it before we started the fight or because we wanted to win some political points so we are the one going to stop the illegality, it was there before we came and now we have come and we are going to stop it,” he said.
Meanwhile, a Deputy National Director of AROCHA Ghana, Daryl Bosu says it is high time the President Nana Akufo Addo admits that he has failed in the fight against illegal mining. According to him the President’s statement was not in good taste and smack of uncertainties.
“What was the real essence of saying let’s have a conversation. His statement came across as though as a country there is no consensus as to whether we need to allow galamsey or not. It is an illegal activity and that is why before 2016 and swearing in he made very passionate and strong commitment as to what as a country we need to do to secure our national resources. He then went further again to meet with traditional authority asking them for support and that is why for the first time we saw a president commit his presidency to address an environmental hazard so to come back after 3 years of actually initiating several actions and these actions have been with the inter- Ministerial Committee, the Vanguard, the District Mining Committee and you come back after 3 years and say let’s have an open conversation all because he is very much aware that we failed in making sure that the goal we set for ourselves we couldn’t achieve it”.
According to him the government should not make the attempt to come back and say Ghana should legalise galamsey.
Meanwhile, speaking on the same show an advocate against illegal mining, Elvis Darko says the fight has failed largely because people in the political space has made it a campaign issue.
“People have decided to choose and pick their messages depending on where they find themselves. In opposition they are friends to the people in the industry and in government they want to fight them. That approach has been the bane of our inability to stop the illegality”.