The nine officers who supervised mining activities in nine mining districts, according to the Lands and Natural resources Minister, John Peter Amewu, were negligent, as they allowed illegal mining to continue in their respective areas.
Mr. Amewu said their interdiction will help the Ministry’s investigations into some illegalities in all the nine mining districts.The Minister said the nine officers had received letters indicating their interdiction, adding that 60 percent of their salaries will be paid monthly until investigations end.
“They have gotten their letters now, they are actually on interdiction. The committee just started investigation. Those who are on interdiction now will be facing the committee. Of course, 60 percent of their salaries will be paid until the investigation is completed” he emphasized.
The nine, who were in charge of monitoring mining activities in each of the nine mining zones were asked to proceed on leave with immediate effect for allowing illegal miners to takeover their designated territories.
This came up following a tour of mining sites by the Minister in the Western Region. The Minister also hinted that, the dismissed nine might be replaced since “there are young graduates out there who are ready to work.”
He hinted that applications will soon be opened to have the officers replaced without delay.
The Minister has so far taken what appears to be a tough stance on illegal mining, as media and civil society campaign against the menace has heightened. ,
He has so far ensured the evacuation of some excavators used for galamsey at various mining sites, and also suspended the issuance of small scale mining license, following the expiration of a caution to illegal miners to stop their activities or be made to face the law.
While several efforts are underway to end the menace, there are moves to ensure an alternative livelihood for the many miners who will be affected.