Illegal activities of Wontumi’s mining company punishable by imprisonment – OccupyGhana

Wontumi Red3.png Wontumi is the owner of Akonta Mining Company Limited

Sat, 1 Oct 2022 Source: www.ghanaweb.com

Pressure group, OccupyGhana has called for the prosecution of Akonta Mining Company, its directors and officers for the company’s illegal mining activities in the Tano Nimiri Forest Reserve.

In a letter dated September 30, 2022, and addressed to the Minister for Lands and Natural Resources, Samuel Abu Jinapor, OccupyGhana charged the minister to forward facts of the company’s illegal activities to the Attornery General and the police for action.

“We therefore demand that you forthwith refer the facts and evidence in your possession that show that the said mining company is undertaking mining operations in breach of the Act, to the police and the Attorney-General for further investigations and prosecution of the company and its directors and officers,” the group said.

The demand by OccupyGhana follows a statement issued by the lands minister on September 30, directing the Forestry Commission to cease mining activities by Akonta Mining Company Limited, owned by the Ashanti Regional Chairman of the New Patriotic Party.

But according to OccupyGhana, the details of the company’s activities as shared in the minister’s statement calls for action beyond the directive to the Forestry Commission.

“You state that the basis for this directive is that the said company is undertaking the mining operations without a mining lease.

“While congratulating you on this step, we would be taken aback if that was all you did. If the company is engaged in the activities that you have alleged, then it is committing an offence that is punishable by fines and prison terms between 15 and 25 years,” the group said.

Quoting Section 99(2)(a) of Act 703 and Section 107(1)(a) of Act 703, OccupyGhana noted that the company, its officers and directors should be prosecuted in line with the law which among other things stipulates that:

“A person who, without a licence granted by the Minister, undertakes a mining operation contrary to a provision of this Act, … commits an offence and is liable on summary conviction to a fine of not less than ten thousand penalty units and not more than fifteen thousand penalty units and to a term of imprisonment of not less than fifteen years and not more than twenty-five years.”

The statement by OccupyGhana comes a few days after it called on President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo to take decisive actions against ending illegal mining activities.

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Source: www.ghanaweb.com
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