Nana Efa Guakro IV, Chief of Kyeremankoma, a suburb at Kintampo, has appealed to government to apply stringent measures to punish ‘galamsey’ operators (illegal miners) and the ‘big men’ behind their operations.
He said the activities of the illegal small scale gold miners are contributing to the massive destruction of the environment, water bodies and aquatic lives, especially in the rural areas of the country.
Nana Guakro made the appeal at a meeting with Board of Directors of the Community Water and Sanitation Agency at Kintampo in the Brong-Ahafo Region.
The meeting was attended by traditional rulers from Kintampo and the Nkoranza Traditional Area, heads of department and assembly members in the Kintampo Municipality, Water and Sanitation Management Team (CWSMT) of the Kintampo Water Supply Systems and selected staff of the Agency in Sunyani.
Led by its chair, Nana Danso Agyei II, Chief of Nkaseim in the Asutifi South District, the seven-member team of the Board was in the Region for a six-day familiarisation tour of the Agency’s Small-Town Piped Water Systems Projects in some municipalities and districts.
Nana Guakro said the activities of the ‘galamsey’ operators do not contribute positively to impact the lives of the people since their presence in an area is only for their selfish interest and not for the development of the community.
He appealed to traditional rulers not to allow any person or group of people to engage in galamsey in their localities to protect the environment and the health and safety of the people.
Mr Salifu Tanko, Manager of the Kintampo CWSMT said the Kintampo water system with about 2,138 household connections as April 2015 was constructed in 2001 to provide potable water for the residents.
He added that 40 public stand pipes, out of the 83 are functioning as at 2015.
Mr Tanko complained that high electricity tariffs as a result of the introduction of prepaid metres are affecting put because greater percentage of revenue is used in paying electricity bills.
He added that delay and failure of government institutions and organisations in paying their outstanding water bills is also contributing to the non-achievement of revenue targets.
Mr Tanko expressed the need for the construction of additional service tank to meet the water demand of the people and also the drilling and mechanisation of new bole holes to augment the existing ones.
The team visited Krobo in the Techiman North District to inspect progress of work of the Krobo Water Supply Project, which is under construction.
The project, being funded by the government under a World Bank/International Development Agency loan of GH¢2,342,502.86 is expected to be completed by June 30.