Ghanaian Chronicle

Minerals Commission holds sensitisation workshop

Date published: September 26, 2012

In their quest to ensure sustainable exploitation of the mineral resource within the framework of environmental integrity and social concerns, the Minerals Commission, in collaboration with the Ministry of Lands and Natural Resources, has embarked on sensitisation workshops.

The series of the nationwide workshops is aimed at educating stakeholders in the sector on the new minerals and mining regulations passed in June this year.

Participants at the four days workshop were taken through the general overview of the mining legal regime, regulations on small scale mining, explosives, health and safety regulations among others.

Addressing stakeholders here in Akim-Oda during the regional workshop, the Chairman of the Minerals Commission, Mr. Fred Ohene-Kena, reiterated that his outfit believed that for mining to make a profound contribution to sustainable development there was the need to address the integration of all aspects.

Throwing light on the importance of addressing aspects such as the economy, social and environmental benefits and impacts during and beyond mine closure, the Minerals Commission Chairman said this would ensure that the resources were managed with the welfare of future generations in mind.

To him, despite the fact that revenues from mining account for some 6% of GDP, it was particularly important that stakeholders support and contribute to processes that would enable us make the most of the mineral resources.

According to him, the passage of the Minerals and Mining Act 2006, Act703, brought to the fore lots of concerns that the subsidiary regulations to operationalise Act 703 had been delayed.

Notwithstanding the delay, Mr. Ohene-Kena stated that those who had bought the new regulations could attest to how detailed they are, and range the wide of issues they address.

He, therefore, urged stakeholders to embrace the implementation and comply with the regulations after it was successfully passed into law, since it would not be effective if stakeholders did not comply.

In his keynote address, the Minister for Lands and Natural Resources, Mike Hammah, stressed that mineral resources, by their nature, were not replaceable, and thus should be cautiously exploited for the benefit of every Ghanaian.

He, therefore, entreated stakeholders to see the laws and regulations governing the industry as a tool for sustainable wealth creation and development of opportunities in the sector.

Touching on the essence of the workshop, the sector Minister said the workshop on the regulations signified an important milestone in the collective effort to manage the mining industry better than before.

This, he contended, could be use as a basis to demand accountable governance from the various players of the mining industry, including the regulators of the sector and related institutions.

Pictures from Klo Gbi, a pressure group at Odumase

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