General News of Mon, 30 Apr 201818
'Desperate' Mahama’s ‘galamsey’ comment 'reckless' - NPP
The governing New Patriotic Party (NPP) has condemned former President John Dramani Mahama for criticising government’s approach in the fight against illegal mining (galamsey).
Mr Mahama, speaking to NDC supporters during the party’s Unity Walk in Kumasi on Saturday, 28 April 2018, said: “It is a fact that if illegal mining is not controlled, water bodies and farmlands will be destroyed. But as we put a stop to illegal mining, we must apply commonsense and ensure that a livelihood package is in place for the miners.
“The tactics of deploying military men to arrest illegal miners is not the way to go because my government has done it before but it failed. The solution is to bring a new mining [law] that will regulate the activities of the miners”.
Reacting to this at a press conference in Accra on Monday, 30 April 2018, Acting General Secretary of the NPP, Mr John Boadu, described Mr Mahama as a desperate politician who would not receive the nod to lead the country again.
He said: “The former president, for instance, is on record to have slammed President Nana Akufo-Addo and his government for waging a war against illegal mining and its effect on lives and the environment particularly our water bodies and forest reserves.
“He also sought to incite illegal miners against government, suggesting that if he becomes president – which I don’t think in his wildest dream will happen because of his incompetence that he exhibited when he was given the opportunity to do so – he wouldn’t clamp down on their activities and that, he’ll protect their interest. How strange is that for a former president?
“We in the New Patriotic Party have always known that the former president is such a desperate politician who will do anything for political power but what we did not know is that his desperation has reached this outlandish extent. His comment is by far the most opportunistic and reckless to have been made by any former leader. We condemn this recklessness in no uncertain terms and call on him to do the honourable thing.”
The NPP also called on Ghanaians, particularly the Media Coalition Against Galamsey to join the party in “condemning with all vehemence, this unfortunate comment from John Mahama which seeks to erode all the gains that the nation has made in the fight against illegal mining and its menace on the altar of political expediency”.
Mr Boadu further stated that the comment by Mr Mahama is “most reprehensible, disgusting, repugnant and unbecoming of a statesman”, adding that: “John Mahama should be the last person to comment on issues of illegal mining having had the real opportunity to govern this country for eight years and doing absolutely nothing to fight the menace of illegal mining which was destroying the very fabric of the Ghanaian society.”