Okyenhene Osagyefuo Amoatia Ofori Panin has once again bemoaned the lingering occurrence of galamsey activities in the country.
He said there is the need to nib the activities of illegal mining also known as galamsey in the bud to safeguard the environment for future generations.
Osagyefuo Amoatia Ofori Panin was reacting to how some people continue to refer to the Kyebi area as being the headquarters of galamsey activities.
In 2014, President John Mahama described the Kyebi area as the headquarters of galamsey but had to later retract and apologise.
Speaking with Nana Yaa Mensah on Sunday Night on Asaase Radio, the Okyenhene said, “The point is, Article 257(6) [of the Constitution] places all the natural resources in their [central government] hands for protection for future generations. They need to protect them. We [the chiefs] do not have coercive force. I tried to use my people to drive them away and we were facing danger every day and people didn’t know.”
“At one time in my relationship with the then Chief of Defence Staff, I begged him. I said it [galamsey] was getting out of hand and we should probably organise some of the military people to come here [Kyebi]. They did and within a week the whole thing has been shut down. A week later they [the politicians] called them [military] and said ‘don’t you know it’s an election year?”
He added, “So I’ve shed tears of anger and frustration where I sit about this and to the point that somebody will even say that I was engaged in galamsey. My answer to them is, I own all the lands, if I want to do galamsey, why would I want to go and steal it? I would go to the Minerals Commission and say I’m going to my land just give me the licence.
“So the pain I shed was people not speaking the truth; lying about it all over.”