I will regulate the mining sector for ‘galamseyers’ to eat—John Mahama
Former President John Dramani Mahama has expressed commitment in putting adequate measures in place to regulate the mining sector.
According to him, that would promote social justice and give opportunity for youth to engage in legal mining.
Speaking at Manhyia Palace in Ashanti Region on Wednesday, the ex-president promised that he would introduce cooperative mining, where mining activities would be well-regulated to ensure miners are well protected to carry out their work.
He noted that the current government had made mining difficult for miners especially small scale miners and alleged that various individuals with legal documents were prevented by the Akufo-Addo led-administration to engage in mining and promised to operationalise their work when voted into power
“A lot of things are not going on well in this country. For instance, when it comes to small scale mining, people paid monies and were given concessions genuinely which was done through the Minerals Commission. When the current government assumed office, they have taken these concessions from these people and have given them to other people. We must know that Ghanaians are one people and we are all entitled to benefit from the country. It doesn’t matter one’s tribe- be it Ashantis, Akyems, Gas, Fantes, Ewes or Dagombas.
Unfortunately, there’s been discrimination and as a result, if one is not affiliated to a particular party, his or her concession would be taken away from them and given to other people,” he said.
The former president indicated that the current government had seized excavators and other equipments from small scale miners to prevent them from working.
“They have seized some people’s excavators and have given them to their party members. NDC, as we stand for social justice, is saying that should we be voted for, we will correct all these mistakes. All those who have had their excavators seized will have them back.
Those whose concessions have been taken will have them back. There will be a law in place to spell out how the mining would be done to benefit the country without causing destruction to the land and water bodies. That’s what we need. We are seeking to introduce cooperative mining where the youth can organise themselves into groups and there would be mining safety officers to ensure they do the right thing,” he added.
In that regards, ex-president Mahama pledged to disengage military personnel in mining-related activities.
The occasion was at also used to introduce his running mate, Professor Jane Naana Opoku-Agyemang to the Asantehene, Otumfuo Osei Tutu II.
Ex president Mahama at the place also reiterated his promise to introduce what he calls the “10 Billion Big Push” where US$ 2 billion would be set aside towards infrastructural development in various parts of the country each year for a period of five years, should he be elected as president in the December polls.
According to him, the infrastructural projects would cover the areas of health, education, roads among others.
Major road infrastructure projects he cited under the initiative would include the dualisation of the Accra-Kumasi road, Accra to Cape Coast Road and Accra to Aflao road.
He said that he would also ensure the completion of the Eastern Corridor road as well as construct a number of roads in the Bono, Bono East and the Ahafo regions.
The former President further indicated that he would consider railway development as a priority should he be elected as President.