The Small-Scale Anti-illegal Mining Taskforce and some small-scale miners have been attacked by some illegal miners for arresting their Chinese counterparts.
The illegal miners, believed to be Ghanaians, pelted the security agents with stones in an attempt to free the three Chinese nationals, who were arrested for allegedly engaging in ‘galamsey’ at a mining site.
The incident happened on Thursday at the outskirt of Manso-Aponapon in the newly created Amansie South District of the Ashanti Region.
Patrick Don Chebe, Deputy Commander of the Small-Scale Anti-illegal Mining Taskforce, said members of the taskforce fired warning shots to temporarily disperse the illegal miners to whisk away the Chinese illegal miners. He explained that the taskforce fired warning shots and called reinforcement to manage the situation.
The incident comes ahead of the lifting of the ban on small-scale mining by government on December 17, 2018.
Government took the decision after the successful implementation of the roadmap announced in August, this year, which involves the reclaiming and re-afforestation of mined out areas, restoration of impacted water bodies and strict supervision of the processes of awarding mining licences and associated permits.
So far, 848 documents of small-scale miners, including licences for concessions, representing 91 per cent, have been vetted by the Inter-Ministerial Committee on Illegal Mining.
About 339 documents have been endorsed by the committee, while 499 others are still being considered.