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Tuesday, October 4, 2022

Natural resources are the heartbeat of any country and ought to be protected: Lands Minister

Image: MLNR.

Ghana’s Minister for Lands and Natural Resources and Memeber of Parliament for the Damongo Constituency, Lawyer Samuel Abdulai Jinapor has affirmed his resolve to work towards sanitising the Lands and Natural Resources Ministry for posterity.

According to him, the lands and natural resources of any country constitute the heartbeat of that country and ought to be protected and thus, the Akufo-Addo led Government will not relent in its efforts to sanitise the sector through appropriate policies and regulations.

“The commitment of President Akufo-Addo to ensure the sustainable and efficient management of the lands and natural resources of the country, anchored on integrity and transparency is total and unflinching and the Government will be relentless, totally committed, to enhance all the measures that have been put in place to come to grips with the matters of illegal mining.”

The Minister made this comment on 18th January in an interview on Ghana Television’s Breakfast Show.

Illegal mining activities in some mining regions of Ghana continue unabated but the “Government, through the Ministry of Lands and Natural Resources and its agencies, has worked to bring the situation reasonably under control,” he said.

Rsourcing the Inspectorate Division of the Commission, digitalisation of the Minerals Commission, the introduction of online application for mineral rights, and the revamping of the Community Mining Schemes are just a few of the many interventions the government is implementing.

“On enforcement, the declaration of water bodies and forest reserves as red zones for mining, the ban on reconnaissance, prospecting and/or exploration for minerals in forest reserves, the tracking of earthmoving equipment and machines for mining, among what is being implemented,” Lawyer Jinapor added.

He emphasised that the government is not against small scale mining, but advocates for legally regulated process. The Government has developed a manual for the Community Mining Scheme, which seeks to ensure that community mining is done in an environmentally sound manner. The manual requires that Community Mining Schemes have sick bays, changing rooms, concurrent reclamation and revegetation, functioning offices, and environmental officers on site.

He added that the Regional, Municipal and District Security Councils have been tasked to led the fight in their various jurisdictions, to be supported by the national taskforce as and when the need arises. He called on all communities to support this fight as the communities bear the brunt of the consequences of illegal mining.

www.zamireports.com | Accra.

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