To create jobs for the nation’s teeming youth and ensure protection of Ghana’s lands, forests and water bodies, President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo has launched three community mining schemes at Egila/Gwira, Akango/Duale and Aboso, in the Evalue-Gwira and Tarkwa Nsuaem constituencies, respectively, of the Western Region.
The schemes, according to the President, are expected to create some 2,000 jobs at Egila/Gwira and Akamgo/Duale, and some 10,000 at Aboso.
No more galamsey
Launching the schemes on Tuesday, as part of his two-day working visit of the Western Region, President Akufo-Addo explained that the Community Mining Scheme is an initiative to encourage responsible small-scale mining, in line with the Minerals and Mining Law, 2015, Act 703, in communities across the country.
Recounting the menace wreaked by galamsey across the country, prior to his assumption of office in January 2017, the President stated that the phenomenon led to the pollution of water bodies, degradation of lands, non-reclamation of degraded land and use of dangerous chemicals, such as mercury and cyanide, on the environment.
“We believe that participation by Ghanaians and the host communities in mining will set us, as a nation, on the journey to boost the rural economy, help rural infrastructure development, and improve livelihoods, through shared wealth. More importantly, it will enable Ghanaians develop the capacity to take over, eventually, the operations of the minerals sector,” he said.
Apart from the launch of the Community Mining Scheme, the President also cut sod for the construction of the Abosso Tailings Project, a 1-District-1-Factory initiative which is being established to treat and process tailings waste to produce gold doré.
Yellowtail Ltd, the enterprise promoting this initiative, will construct a state-of-the-art gold processing facility, within six months, with a total capital outlay of some $12 million to ensure steady production of gold doré.
“The benefits of this project are both environmental and economic. The project will introduce technology and safe working practices to small to medium scale underground sites, and rehabilitate contaminated sites for agricultural purposes and developments,” the President added.
The project will contribute approximately US$1.35 million as royalties, US$54,000 as small-scale mining sustainable levy to the government on annual basis for five years.
Cumulatively, a total amount in excess of US$8.7 million will be contributed as corporate tax over the five year period.
In a related development, the President says Ghanaians are witnessing, at first hand, “The Year of Roads”, as road projects are ongoing in every region of the country.
Speaking at the sod-cutting ceremony for the construction of the Essiama-Nkroful-Telekubokazo road, in the Ellembelle constituency, President Akufo-Addo expressed his delight that “it is under my time as President that the road leading to Nkroful (hometown of Kwame Nkrumah) is about to be constructed.”
He added: “I told Ghanaians that this is the Year of Roads. Ghanaians can testify to this. We are not doing ‘green book’ propaganda roads, we are doing genuine roads on the ground for all to see. All my roads are ‘feeli feeli’ roads, not green book roads.”
The road was awarded for construction on November 5, 2019, with the Ghana National Petroleum Corporation (GNPC) being the funding agency. It is a 6.50-kilometre stretch, which is being constructed by M/S Memphis Metropolitan Ltd, and is expected to be completed on April 29, 2021, at a cost of GH¢5,520,130.51.