The government will on Thursday, August 16, 2018, announce a roadmap for the lifting of the ban on small-scale mining.
The small scale mining roadmap will be outlined by the Chairman of the inter-ministerial committee on illegal mining and minister for Environment, Science, Technology and Innovation, Prof. Frimpong Boateng.
The government placed an initial six-month ban on small-scale mining last year following the prevalence of illegal mining popularly known as “galamsey’’ in the country. However, the ban had faced some extensions in order for the government to fully sanitise the mining sector.
The ban was to protect human health and the environment from anthropogenic emissions and releases of mercury and mercury compounds caused by illegal mining, permanently eradicate unauthorised methods of small-scale mining and to allow the government to come out with measures that will address the illegal mining phenomenon.
In order to deal the galamsey menace, the government constituted an inter-ministerial committee on illegal mining in March 2017 headed by the Minister for Environment, Science, Technology and Innovation, Prof. Frimpong Boateng to carry out activities that will bring sanity into the artisanal gold mining sector.
The committee after a year of comprehensive research, consultations, training and deliberations with key stakeholders have completed a conclusive roadmap approved by the cabinet to serve the purpose of regulating the activities of illegal mining of the country.
The road map will involve the reclaiming and re-afforestation of mined-out areas; the restoration of impacted water bodies; strict supervision of the processes of awarding mining licenses and associated permits; and continued formalization and regulation of the small-scale mining sector.
According to Deputy Information Minister, Nana Ama Dokuaa Asiamah Agyei, the announcement on Thursday is the beginning of a series of activities aimed at preparing stakeholders for a better regulated small-scale mining regime.
She, therefore, asked stakeholders in the sector and the general public to adhere to the procedures, rules and regulations which will be outlined in the Road Map for the advancement of the country.