The Methodist Bishop of Obuasi, Rt. Rev. Baffour Asamoah-Agyei, has noted with concern the massive devastation caused to the country’s forests as a result of ‘Galamsey’ (illegal mining) operation. He has, therefore, called on the government to face the menace head-on and deal with it decisively before it gets out of hand.
Speaking at the 25th Annual Diocesan Synod of the Church at Obuasi, the Bishop said Ghana could achieve self-sufficiency in rice production by 2024, but the land which could be used for rice production was being used for galamsey operations without any proper reclamation for future use.
He noted: “Unfortunately as a nation, we are not looking at galamsey’s negative impact on the land and water bodies, human life, wild life, crop and animal production, climatic conditions and vegetation, rather we are politicising its operations,” further stating: “The galamsey menace is a threat to crop and animal production and to food security.”
On national unity, Bishop Asamoah-Agyei said the country had embraced a democratic form of government over the years, “but unfortunately, we have allowed partisan politics to divide us.”
He noted that the politics of insults, with the young having no respect for the aged, was alien to the Ghanaian culture and must stop. “Our culture of tolerance, respect for the elderly and patriotism should not be sacrificed on the altar of party’s politics.”
Touching on the government’s flagship programme of Planting For Export and Rural Development, the Diocesan Bishop noted that the programme was going to have a tremendous impact not only on farmers, but the nation as a whole, and encouraged farmers in the church to take advantage of the initiative to uplift their social and financial status.
The 4-Days Synod elected Evangelist Gabriel Nyamekye-Odum as the new Diocesan Lay Chairman who replaces Sister Beatrice Hammond whose term of office ends in September this year.
From Frederick Danso Abeam, Obuasi