Deputy Lands and Natural Resources Minister in charge of Mines, George Mireku Duker, has decommissioned about 838 changfans and tools being used by illegal miners on the Offin River.
The Minister stormed the area on Tuesday with military officers of Operation Halt II to carry out the exercise following reports of illegal mining activities on the Offin River in the Western Region.
Also present at the operation aimed at reminding the illegal miners of the government’s uncompromising and unshakeable stance against illegal mining was the Chief Executive Officer of the Minerals Commission, Martin Ayisi.
After receiving a detailed briefing from the Commander of the Military team, Brigadier Amoah Ayisi, on operations made so far by his team since Sunday, when they moved to the site, Mr Duker warned that government will not take its feet off the pedal until the canker of galamsey is nipped in the bud.
He assured that all waterbodies in the country will enjoy permanent protection from the personnel of the Ghana Armed Officers.
The Minister said the Ministry of Lands and Natural Resources and the Minerals Commission are aware of the complex nature of the galamsey war but is not worried as it has the total support of President Akufo-Addo and Ghanaians to protect the country’s waterbodies.
“Since Sunday, they’ve been patrolling Offin and Ankobra making sure they arrest these recalcitrant miners who have been destroying our waterbodies. It is very unfortunate that out of greed, people are destroying the heritage and future of this country. It is very unfortunate that despite the government’s efforts, people are still doing this.
“It is sad that people are mining in a river body without any shred of responsibility of being a Ghanaian. I want to commend the military for all the work they’ve done. So far, they have burnt over 900 equipment and it shows the incredible work they’ve done,” he said.
He further charged Ghanaians to be wary of the danger of illegal mining and assist the government deal with the canker, adding it is a civic and patriotic duty to help the government win the war against illegal mining.
He stated that the new measures announced by the Minerals Commission which give details about the permanent patrolling of the waterbodies by the Operation Halt III team will go a long way in helping the government eradicate illegal mining.