Burning expensive excavators is madness; use them to fix our bad roads – Central Region chiefs.
Some chiefs in the Central region have expressed their disquiet about the government’s decision to burn excavators seized from illegal miners, describing the approach as complete madness.
According to them, it makes more sense if the heavy and expensive machines are used to fix the deplorable roads in the region than to set them ablaze.
They have thus urged the government to halt the burning of excavators seized by the anti-galamsey taskforce, adding that the approach to fighting the illegal mining aka galamsey is counterproductive.
The Ankobeahen of Twifu Atti-Mokwa Traditional Area who also doubles as the Odikro of Twifu Ntafrewaso, Nana Gyamera Akoto II told EIB Network Central Regional Correspondent Yaw Boagyan that the Minister for Lands and Resources must explain the rationale behind the excavator burning spree.
“As a Chief, I think burning down excavators which have been hugely invested in is madness and shouldn’t be encouraged in this country,” the chief said.
He added that mining in his area, most of which are legal has given job opportunities to most of the Youth in the Central Region, so the government must allow them to carry on with their activities.
Out of 25 excavators burnt by the taskforce against illegal mining activities, fifteen (15) of them were reported to be in the Central Region alone.
A report by 3news suggests the excavators were burned in the houses of their owners in Ntafrewaso, Asamoah Krom and Awisem, all in the Twifo Praso District.
The government has renewed its efforts to clamp down on illegal mining, with the military directed to destroy all excavators on site.
Chairman of the National Association of Small-Scale Miners, Alhaji Usman Musah, said six members of the Association were affected by the actions of the taskforce.
“They parked the machines in the house and the military came to the house to burn them. I can send you the videos right now,” he told TV3.
“We don’t know what is happening. They don’t say anything, they don’t ask anything, they don’t ask for document they used explosives to enter the house. They just throw the explosives and then they enter.”
“We know that people working in the forest and also working in water bodies they are the people we are talking about but now here we are!
“People have the license working in small scale mining but at the end of the day the soldiers went into their homes and burnt their machines we don’t know what is happening. You have to ask the government what is his problem?” Alhaji Usman Musah added.