Partners of Nature Africa (PONA), a Non-Governmental Organization (NGO) in reclamation and rejuvenation of mining sites, has commended government for putting the right measures in place prior to the lifting of the ban on Artisanal Small Scale Mining.
In a statement, its Operations Director, Mr. Forster Amofah, said the measures put in place by the Inter-Ministerial Committee on Illegal Mining, are most likely to ensure responsible mining henceforth.
“We at Partners of Nature Africa, are of a strong conviction that measures put in place prior to the lifting of the ban on artisanal mining would bring sanity into the system and ensure responsible mining with minimal effect on the environment,” Mr. Amofah said.
Mr. Amofa, however, reminded government of the need to ensure that the miners reclaim ad rejuvenate all the lands they exploit. And also illegal mining, known as Galamsey is continuously checked.
“Mining is not a bad thing but when it is done irresponsibly, it turns out to churn out more negatives than positives. That is why we want government to ensure that, no land is left unclaimed after mining and also Galamsey is checked at all times,” he stated.
He also admonished small scale miners against acts that would take them back to the situation that necessitated the ban, reminding the miners that, “the ball is in your own court and you determine your own fate”.
Government has announced the lifting of the 20-month old ban on illegal and small scale mining after subjecting mining to a vetting process and putting in place measures to monitor and supervise their activities.
Partners of Nature Africa has undertaken reclamation and rejuvenation of abandoned mined pits in the Ashanti, Eastern and Westerns Regions. The Organization has carried out an assessment tour of some 250 communities affected by small scale or illegal mining.
Minti, Pemenase, Akyem Takyiman, Akyem Dokyi, Konongo, Kobriso, Appiahkrom, Taahuma, Nsuayem, Mremrem and other towns have benefited from the Organization’s reclamation and rejuvenation projects.
Some of the areas have been planted with bamboo, rubber, timber species and food crops like plantain, cocoyam and cassava.