Regional News Sat, 24 Jun 2006

Dumasi farmers vow not to vacate the land

Tarkwa (W/R) June 24,-GNA-A meeting by farmers of Dumasi with Osagyefo Kwamina Enimil VI, paramount chief of Wassa Fiase Traditional Area, his elders and representatives of Bogoso Gold Limited (BGL) ended in a deadlock with the farmers swearing not to leave the land until compensation is paid by BGL.

According to the farmers they would not look at the "dreadful face of a bear to swallow bones."

"We shall go back to the land, we shall not be deterred by mounting intimidation", they said.

The farmers, in deed have returned to the land bringing their occupation to two weeks.

The farmers claim that the land which they cultivate have been taken over by BGL for the construction of a new tailings dam and upon Memorandum Of Understanding (MOU), BGL was to give the farmers specific amount of money to enable them to acquire new lands for farming. They said some people have been paid, while others have not and this prompted their action.

As a result, the Paramount Chief convened a meeting to see how best to solve the issue amicably, but with the Paramount Chief still claiming that the money should be paid to him the farmers would not agree. The Paramount Chief and his elders wanted the farmers to leave the land to enable BGL to operate.

A source from BGL said the money for the payment of the compensation is ready but unfortunately the Paramount Chief of Wassa Fiase Traditional Area has sent BGL to court insisting that the money be paid to him instead of the farmers.

The source said the Mine cannot pay the money until the court determines who is the rightful owner or occupant of the land. 24 June 06
Source: GNA