Government will on Friday, December 14, 2018, announce a new policy framework aimed at regularizing and reforming mining activities in the country.
The framework was drawn by the Inter-Ministerial Committee against Illegal Mining which was established to supervise the ban on small-scale mining.
At a media briefing in Takoradi on Sunday, the Minister of Information, Kojo Oppong Nkrumah said the new policy framework has been approved by cabinet and would be rolled out to among other things avert a resurgence of illegal and irresponsible mining in the country.
He said per the new framework, over 3,000 newly trained former “galamsey” operators, as well as thousands more who are interested in mining, would be allowed to operate legally after December 15, 2018.
According to him, the new framework also spells out the processes towards dredging and land reclamation in the areas affected by illegal mining, institutional reforms within the mining regulatory agencies as well as legal reforms in the mining sector.
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Mr Oppong Nkrumah was confident that stakeholders and the general public would continue to cooperate with authorities even as the new phase on the ban on small-scale mining is rolled out.
The government in March 2017 imposed a ban on small-scale mining following the destruction of major water bodies and forest reserves across the country.
Upon the imposition of the ban, a joint military and police team known as Operation Vanguard was launched to enforce the ban.
As of October 2018, Operation Vanguard had arrested about 1,687 illegal miners.