The Precious Minerals Marketing Company (PMMC) has opened a digitalised assay laboratory at the Kotoka International Airport to enhance the examining and evaluation of gold and other minerals.
The Vice President of the Republic, Dr Mahamudu Bawumia in his address touted the digitalizing of sectors in Ghana by the government.
“The digitalization of the operations of the National Assay Laboratory is yet another milestone delivered by the Akufo-Addo government with respect to its drive to ensure efficiency in the mining sector,” he said.
Dr Bawumia revealed the digitalised laboratory will eradicate acts of corruption which prevent the state from accruing the maximum funds from the assaying of gold.
He further noted that the fight against the smuggling of gold which proved to be an insurmountable task by past administrations will be quelled by the digitised aboratory.
“The goal of this whole agenda is to streamline governance by reducing the human interface and making the process more efficient. Reducing the human element in the gold-assaying process does not only reduce the risk of corruption but also strengthen the PMMC to execute with precision its core duty,” he added.
Under the digitised regime, assay certificates have have unique security features which pose challenges for gold scammers.
“Digitalisation has also made it possible to monitor in real time gold passing through the assay laboratory. It has improved collation of timely data on gold export and revenue to aid national economic planning ”
The digitalised assay laboratory project according to Dr Bawumia commenced in 2018 and has become a reality under the watch of the Minister for Lands and Natural Resources Lawyer Samuel Abdulai Jinapor. He was of full of praise for the Ministe referring to him as the “the bulldozer “ who gets things done.
Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia also commended the board and management of PMMC for their role for the successful implementation of digitalizing the operations of the PMMC.
For Lawyer Jinapor, the digitised assay laboratory is yet another stride by the Ministry in its quest to have the country optimize revenue generation in the mining sector.
The establishment of a gold refinery factory, securing a London Bullion Market Association (LBMA) Certification, and the implementation of far-reaching policies in the small-scale mining sector were outlined as some of the achievements chalked by the Ministry.
“We are doing all these, as part of measures to make the Lands and Natural Resources sector of our country fit for purpose, for the benefit of Ghanaians. Article 257(6) of our national Constitution, vests all minerals in their natural state in the President of the Republic, “on behalf of, and in trust for the people of Ghana.” The exploitation and utilisation of our mineral resources must, therefore, benefit the people of Ghana, the true owners of these minerals,” the Member of Parliament for the Damongo Constituency said.
“It is for this reason that, since 2017, we begun putting in place the building blocks to retain, here in Ghana, the full value of our natural resources. We have, therefore, committed to move away from export of raw materials, to value addition and industrialisation, for a prosperous economy. In 2018, we begun, under a Public – Private Partnership, the construction of a four hundred kilogramme (400kg) capacity gold refinery, which is now fully completed, and ready to start refining our gold. This refinery is timely, as the Bank of Ghana commences the purchase of gold domestically to shore up its reserves, and contribute to the retention of the value of our mineral resources.”
The sector Minister said the Digitalised National Assay Laboratory ties in with Vice President Dr Mahamudu Bawumia’s vision for the gold sector and that trustees of the country’s mineral resources can at any time irrespective of their location monitor gold exports.
“The Digitalised National Assay Laboratory will provide real time information of gold exports, for monitoring and planning. It will be accessible to key stakeholders like the President of the Republic, the constitutional trustee of our mineral resources, the Vice President and the Head of Economic Management Team, the Minister for Finance, the Governor of the Bank of Ghana, the Commissioner-General of the Ghana Revenue Authority, and the Ministry of Lands and Natural Resources, ” he said.
The move also forms part of government’s efforts to attract the needed investment and make Ghana the Mining hub of Africa.
www.zamireports.com | Accra.