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Press Review Sat, 3 Nov 2001

River Asuman is safe - Water Commission

The Water Resources Commission (WCR) as declaring water from River Asuman as safe and not posing any danger to the health of humans, flora and fauna, making use of the river, which has been contaminated through cyanide spillage.

It said the spillage that occurred at Ghana Goldfields Limited in the Tarkwa area has not raised the cyanide levels of the Huni and Asuman rivers, as levels of a cyanide level upstream of the spill and those of the two tributaries are almost at the same concentration.

The WCR further said although there was a slight increase in total cyanide at Huniso, a town nearby, this might be due to inherent conditions prevalent in the water, because Huniso is farther downstream the site of the spill than Abekoase, which is closer town.

These were contained in its findings following a directive by the Environment and Science Minister, Prof Dominic Fobih, that the commission should examine water samples from the river to ascertain independently the cyanide levels, following the spillage at the Ghana Goldfields Limited mine on October 16.

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The examination was to establish the status of the water quality and determine the gravity of the situation. “This notwithstanding, the mining agencies need to be more careful in their operations in order to avert such occurrences that could endanger human and aquatic life when they happen,” WCR cautioned.

According to the commission, the results of its examination showed that the concentrations of cyanide at the sampling locations, six days after the spill were below the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) guideline values, “and as such does not pose any health hazard to the communities that live along the river”.

Source: .
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