Convener of #FixTheCountry movement, Oliver Mawuse Barker-Vormawor has reacted to President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo’s comments on the activities of Akonta Mining Limited, a company owned by a regional chairman of the governing New Patriotic Party (NPP), Bernard Antwi Boasiako, alias Chairman Wontumi.
He is concerned that the president made himself a spokesperson for a company whose activities are under investigation over alleged illegal small-scale mining (galamsey).
In comments at a meeting of Catholic priests in Koforidua earlier this week, the president stated that Akonta Mining was not presently engaged in illegal mining anywhere in the country.
“Why is the president of Ghana, the one speaking on behalf of a mining company under investigation for engaging in illegal mining activities? Hmmm!” Barker-Vormawor wrote on Facebook, Thursday, January 5.
The president in delivering his remarks said: “Let me respond briefly to the chairperson on the issue of illegal mining. I want to assure him and all of you that Akonta Mining is not engaged in any illegal mining anywhere in Ghana as we speak.
“Further, the Ministry of Lands and Natural Resources has through the agency of the Forestry Commission, with the assistance of the military, made the effort to cordon off all 294 sites of forest reserves in the country and rid them of illegal mining as we speak.”
In October last year, Akonta Mining was accused of operating from the Forest Reserve after they had a month prior clashed with some locals in the town of Samreboi in the Western North Region.
The Ministry of Lands and Natural Resources ordered a halt to their operations in the forest but clarified that they had a valid mining license in areas outside of the natural habitat.
There was also a report that security operatives had raided one of the operational sites of the comoany in the forest reserve, burning machines and structures.
The Special Prosecutor has recently stated that he is investigating the company on matters relating to illegal mining and corruption.