Two Chinese collect gold in a mine in Kumasi, Ghana, on November 3. Photo: IC
Two Chinese collect gold in a mine in Kumasi, Ghana, on November 3. Photo: IC

THE OBUASI Divisional Police Command has arrested two Chinese nationals for allegedly killing two persons after opening fire on 10 small-scale miners at Mamiriwa No1 near Obuasi on Wednesday evening.

Nana Boateng aka abortion, 28, and Eric Ofori, were shot dead during a confrontation with the Chinese illegal miners, who had trespassed on their concession.

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Alexander Donu, 27 and Anthony Apraku, 34, who were among the small-scale miners, also sustained severe bullet injuries when they came under attack by their Chinese assailants.

DSP Kwabena Otuo-Akyeampong, Obuasi Divisional Crime Officer, told DAILY GUIDE that the police carried the three of the wounded men to the Obuasi Government Hospital, where two of them were pronounced dead, while Anthony Apraku, also a victim, managed to go the hospital himself.

According to the police chief, the Chinese killers escaped after committing the heinous crime but the police launched a manhunt in the entire locality and arrested two of them.

He said the 10 small-scale miners, including the victims, after being mobilised by Kofi Gyimah, went and confronted the Chinese galamsey operators over a disputed mining concession at Mamiriwa community.

DSP Otuo-Akyeampong narrated that the Ghanaian miners subjected their foreign counterparts to severe beating and in their attempt to leave the scene, the Chinese opened fire on them.

He stated that the police had registered a case against the killers, whose identities are being kept secret for security reasons, and started investigation.

The MP for Obuasi West, Kwaku Kwarteng, expressed concern about the continuous violation of the law by Chinese mining operators in the area.

?To start with, section 83 of the Mining and Minerals Act (2006) forbids non-Ghanaians from doing any form of small scale mining in Ghana.

So the Chinese should not have been in a position to engage in any dispute over any small scale mining activity. And yet, this is not the first time an incident of this nature has happened.

The impudence and disregard for Ghanaians and Ghanaian laws by foreigners in the small-scale mining sector is unbelievable,? Mr Kwarteng said.

He said the inaction of government and security agencies, in the face of illegal mining activities by foreigners, was most hurtful.

?Government must act decisively in these Mamiriwa killings. Our security agencies must arrest the offenders and subject them to the law.

The Mahama administration must take advantage of the Mamiriwa disturbances and killings to disprove the widely held belief that senior government officials take bribes from these foreign nationals in order to allow them to mine illegally.

?If government fails to act, it is not hard to see that, very soon, the sight of foreigners will become a provocative target of mob anger.

The people of Obuasi, in particular, are waiting to see the response of government in this case,? he said.

From Ernest Kofi Adu, Kumasi

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