As the debate for the government to ban all forms of small scale mining rages on, a former Chief Executive Officer of the Ghana Chamber of Mines, Dr Joyce Aryee has suggested that the government considers developing other minerals for the youth to mine apart from gold.
According to the former Chamber of Mines chief, there are other equally economic viable minerals that can aid in the development of Ghana either than gold which has become the country’s focus.
Speaking during the town hall meeting organised by Accra-based radio station Joy FM to assess the 100 days of President Akufo-Addo’s government, Dr. Aryee said it was time for the attention on gold to be shifted to other minerals which can earn the country some forex like Kaolin and salt.
“We need to move away from just focusing on gold mining and to go into other forms of minerals; one of which is Kaolin, so that we can promote Ghanaians in mining. Even shell banks in some of the coastal areas, at Dodi, they grow and form shell banks which can be used in the cement factory and so on.”
“I think a positive attitude towards Ghanaians in mining, focusing on not gold but other minerals will actually aid our development and would be the way to go,” she added.
Kaolin is one of the most common minerals in Ghana. Kaolin powder is used in ceramics, medicine, coated paper, as a food additive, in toothpaste, as a light diffusing material in white incandescent light bulbs, and in cosmetics. It is generally the main component in porcelain.
The Vice President Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia who was the Guest of Honour and the main speaker at the town hall meeting agreed with Dr. Aryee.
“I share those views, as a country, a lot of the time we forget how much we really have in terms of resources and you were just pointing that out again, and I think it is very important because some of these minerals are in higher demand, much higher priced per tonne than gold and we should look at them.”