A two-day workshop organised by WACAM, a civil society group, to sensitize political parties, assembly members, media practitioners and communities on environmental and mining issues and Election 2012, has ended at Fijai near Takoradi.
In a communiqué, the participants called for comprehensive environmental governance and asked government to ensure “Environmental justice”.
They advocated total review of the Minerals and Mining Act in consultation with the mining communities in order to serve the best interest of the people.
The participants said mineral license should be issued after communities and individual landowners have been consulted and the communities and landowners have given their consent in writing.
They said, mining in forest reserves contradict the 1992 National Land Policy and it should be abolished, and international principles such as “Polluter Pays Principles and Free Prior and Informed Consent” should be internalized in the constitution.
The participants said environmental issues relating to the extractive sector should be a major feature in the manifestoes and campaign messages of political parties.
They urged the media to ensure that their reportage was devoid of statements that could trigger conflicts before, during and after the elections.
The participants asked the media to give priority to environmental and mining issues during the electioneering.**
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