The Western Regional Minister Mr. Ebenezer Kwodwo Teye Addo says the government would not shield any District Chief Executive or chief caught engaging in illegal small-scale mining popularly called galamsey.

He said government would not relent or compromise its stance of flushing out illegal miners, irrespective of their position in society.

The Regional Minister said since the Regional Security taskforce arrested some Ghanaians and foreigners involved in illegal mining in some parts of the Region, his cell phone had been inundated with calls from high profile personalities in society pleading for their release.

He said however that, in spite of such societal pressure, his outfit would not heed to their pleas and would allow the law to take its cause in order to serve as a deterrent to everyone.

Mr. Addo made these remarks during his maiden visit to the Mpohor District on Thursday, a district notorious for its illegal small-scale mining, to acquaint himself with the situation there.

He also paid a courtesy call on the paramount chief of Mpohor, Nana Ekow Entsie II and also had a meeting with the staff of the assembly.

He entreated the assembly members to support the fight against illegal mining and asked the people to desist from politicizing the exercise.

The Regional Minister said small-scale mining had degraded the environment and polluted water bodies that could have negative implications on current and future generations.

He assured that government would provide the necessary development infrastructure such as roads, health and educational facilities as well as social interventions to accelerate development.

Mr. Addo entreated the people to support the assembly in revenue mobilization in order to generate internal funds to undertake developmental projects to supplement central government support.

He appealed to the traditional authorities to resolve all land and chieftaincy litigations in the area, adding that such disputes retard development.

The District Chief Executive for the area, Mr. Anthony Bassaw, expressed concern about the lack of resources to put up an office accommodation for the daily administration of the district and added that the district had not received its seed capital since it was inaugurated almost a year ago.

He said the assembly had rented an office accommodation for the assembly and appealed to the regional coordinating council to facilitate efforts to get the start-up capital to off-set its huge bills.

He said some Ghana Education Trust fund (GETfund) projects such as teachers? bungalow, classroom blocks and toilet facilities in the district had stalled because there are no funds to continue.

The DCE said there is relative peace and security in the district and pledged the support of the assembly to the new Regional Minister to help accelerate development in the Region.

Source: GNA


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