Burning of Excavators: If you breach the ‘red zones’, there will be consequences - Lands Ministry warns
The Ministry of Lands and Natural Resources has defended its decision to burn down excavators and other equipment seized by security operatives at illegal mining sites.
There have been concerns with the burning of the excavators with some persons proffering that the equipment could have been used for other important activities.
But in a statement signed by the head of the Monitoring and Evaluation team Benito Owusu-Bio, the Ministry of Lands and Natural Resources said that the Ghana forest zones and water bodies have been declared ‘no go areas’ for any form of mining.
It emphasized that the security personnel have been empowered to apply the law and any person found to have breached will not be spared.
“The Ministry of Lands and Natural Resources has taken note of concerns from certain quarters of our society about the decommissioning of excavators in the ongoing military operations to safeguard the RED ZONES, i.e. our Waterbodies and Forest Reserve.
“While we continue to acknowledge the mandate of the National Security Apparatus to enforce the laws, regulations and/or directives relating to the Mining Sector, we wish to reiterate, forcefully, that the “RED ZONES” remain what they are; red zones, and, thus, NO GO areas. We expect the population to respect these directives to avoid their enforcements which may result in very severe adverse consequences”, parts of the statement read.
The Ministry stressed its commitment to protecting Ghana’s water bodies and forest reserves. It called on Ghanaians to support the government in its quest to end the galamsey menace.
“We need to preserve our Waterbodies and Forest Reserves for our survival and those of future generations. This is not the time to waver. We must be resolute. We need everyone’s support in this noble and national undertaking. Together we can protect our environment!”