Why is President Mahama bent on rewarding recalcitrant offenders?

Jd Mahama 3 Ghana president John Dramani Mahama

Sun, 23 Oct 2016 Source: Badu, K

It is on record that President Mahama and his NDC government’s priority policy is ‘one Chief one Land Cruiser’ at the expense of the suffering Ghanaians.

Actually, Mahama and his NDC strident apparatchiks are more interested in winning elections than improving upon the fortunes of the country.

It is against this backdrop that President Mahama is refusing to censure the wayward Chiefs who are giving out the rural lands to the illegal miners.

In fact, a carefully considered reflection by any serious and committed leadership will acknowledge exactly why the illegal miners activities in our rural areas must be thwarted without delay.

May I ask: Which much publicised transformational leader on this planet would sit idly and watch obstreperous illegal miners seize its country side and despoil its natural resources?

How can a supposedly transformational leader look on unperturbed and allow the contumacious illegal miners seize our rural areas, forcibly dig our gold, destroy the environment and worst of all, terrorise the rural dwellers?

Even though the Chiefs do not have the right to allocate mining lands to individuals who are not in receipt of mining concessions, some Chiefs are in the habit of conniving with illegal miners from China to despoil our natural resources and heedlessly destroying our lands and water bodies.

Apparently, our Chiefs are supposed to develop their communities. However, they are seen to be doing the contrary. Apparently, they have turned nation wreckers.

“A Chief is responsible for the daily administration of the traditional area for its advancement and the growth of its inhabitants. A chief’s ultimate function is the maintenance of law and order as a prerequisite for the growth of the community and the advancement of the people in all spheres of life” (Odotei, 2010).

Ironically, however, the uncaring and unpatriotic Chiefs would often allocate lands to the illegal miners, knowing too well that it is unlawful for any individual to sanction small-scale mining. Needless to point out that the Ghana Minerals Commission has the exclusive right to do so.

So, it is rather infelicitous for our Chiefs and their subordinates to connive with the Chinese illegal miners to steal our natural resources.

To be quite honest, I cannot holdback my arousing disgust towards the ‘enemies of the state’-apologies to Anas.

To put it bluntly, those recalcitrant Chiefs are suffering from inferiority complex. Otherwise, how on earth would they assist illegal immigrants to forcibly dig our natural resources, terrorise the rural dwellers and then wreck the environment?

In any case, we should rather blame President Mahama for his lackadaisical approach to duty. For, he has not shown true leadership in the fight against illegal mining.

As a matter of fact, the mass degradation of our rural areas by the recalcitrant illegal miners is outrageous. Nevertheless, President Mahama is somehow wholly unaware of the seriousness of the destruction, hence his inexorable refusal to circumscribe the activities of the unscrupulous illegal miners.

Per the Constitution of Ghana, no citizen of Ghana is above the law. Yes, the Constitution is candid. However, in my opinion, the enforcement of the laws leaves much to be desired.

For, it seems that some Ghanaians are above our laws. The laws were not enacted for them.

If some Chiefs are indeed giving out lands for illegal mining without the prior knowledge of the Ghana Minerals Commission, the question one may ask then is: ‘Why no incompliant Chiefs have since been brought to book? Are they above the law?

Amazingly, the uncaring Chiefs are colluding with the ‘criminals’ to steal our natural resources. Thus, it would only be fair and proper if such offending Chiefs are prosecuted accordingly.

We cannot and must not allow some obstreperous Chiefs who do not have the nation at heart enrich themselves at the expense of the rest of Ghanaians.

Someone should please remind our indocile Chiefs that respect is earned, but not to be seen as a God given entitlement.

So, our hitherto well-respected Chiefs must revert to their old and discreet ways and then continue to earn our respect. For, their waywardness will not earn them such respect.

Let us also remind our Chiefs that they may have rights over the lands, but they do not own the natural resources underneath the lands. Therefore, they have no right to sell the lands to illegal miners and assist them to forcibly take our natural resources.

In any case, it is incumbent on President Mahama to repudiate such abhorrent actions by the wayward and unpatriotic Chiefs. But then again, the all-important question is: does he have the will and the commitment to do so? I do not think so.

All the same, let us remind President Mahama that if our Chiefs persist with their shenanigans, their reward should not be ‘one Chief one Land Cruiser, but they should rather be sent to ‘Nsawam Prisons’.

K. Badu, UK.

Columnist: Badu, K