Business News of Sat, 11 Nov 20174
Banks chase small-scale miners for their money
Small-scale miners in the country say they have begun feeling the heat of government’s ban on small-scale mining, claiming some of them are dying because their legitimate businesses have collapsed.
According to President of the Small Scale Miners Association, Evangelist Collins Osei Kusi, some of their members have had their properties confiscated by banks making life unhearable for them.
“We are ready to collaborate with government to end and outmanoeuvre illegal mining to save the water bodies and the environment but government should consider sustaining our work”.
The government earlier in 2017 imposed a six-month ban on small-scale mining as part of efforts to end illegal mining and its related activities, which adversely affected the environment, but upon expiration it was extended.
Again, the Lands and Natural resources minister, John Peter Amewu, on Friday, November 10, 2017 announced the ban has been pushed forward for another three months. He announced the extension during a tour of some reclamation project sites in Kyebi in the Eastern Region.
The Minister has said government has set up a committee to monitor development in the sector before a five-year Multilateral Mining Integrated Project (MMIP) would be implemented to regulate mining activities in the country. But say the extension is a surreptitious way of depriving them of their livelihood
They have thus expressed disappointment in the government for further extending the ban on small scale mining, and questioned the kind of policy government wants to roll out in regulating mining activities.
Evangelist Osei Kusi said it is outlandish for government to place a ban on their legitimate business as a means of fighting illegal mining.
“If government really want to eliminate illegal mining activities, then he (government) must involve us and allow us to work as well because we know them and know where they operate,” he has explained.
He told Onua FM that members of the association are now accusing their leadership for conspiring with government to collapse their business.