The Deputy Minister for Lands and Natural Resources, in charge of mining, Mr George Mireku Duker, has opened a Community Mining Scheme (CMS) at Mfante, a farming community in the Ahafo North District of the Ashanti Region.
Addressing the gathering on Tuesday, this week, the Deputy Minister said the new community mine is going to create 2,000 direct jobs and that the scheme will positively affect economic activities in the community and the municipality as a whole.
He re-echoed government’s position that the Community Mining Scheme, which is a substitute for illegal mining, guarantees more benefits to the community than galamsey.
The Deputy Minister, who is also the Member of Parliament for Tarkwa-Nsuaem, contended that the Community Mining Scheme employs a safer method of harvesting gold and that it does not make use of the destructive element of mercury.
He commended President Akufo-Addo and his boss, Samuel A. Jinapor for the initiative and explained that like all the CMS set ups, experts will be deployed to ensure that the measures stipulated in the act that regulates small-scale mining are duly followed.
George Mireku-Duker appealed to the traditional leaders and community to support government’s fight against the galamsey canker and help nip it in the bud.
“The CMS is an initiative of the government to ensure safety mining methods so as to prevent the destruction of our environment. The CMS is a good way of mining gold so that our resources will be protected. We have established CMS schemes in mining communities.
“You all should be happy because this type of mining has been approved by the government. We’ll make sure that all the safety protocols are followed and it feels with happiness to see that a first aid centre has been opened.
“I have seen an office that will ensure proper administration. We’ll assign a Geologist to this firm to inspect and ensure that everything done is in accordance with the law. This Community Mining Scheme will employ at least 2000 persons.
“President Akufo-Addo is not against mining. In fact, he loves mining but he is against activities that destroy our environment,” he said.
The Municipal Chief Executive for Ahafo Ano North District, Martina Appiah Nyantekyi, described it as a welcoming development for the Municipality and warned against illegal mining.
She stressed that the scheme could lead to a turnaround in the economic fortunes of the community, hence requires the support of persons and institutions within the municipality.