Arrest Sir John, Wontumi over galamsey claims – Small Scale Miners

The Concerned Small Scale Miners Union of Ghana has called for the immediate arrest of the Chief Executive Officer of the Forestry Commission, Kwadwo Owusu Afriyie and the Ashanti Regional Chairman of the New Patriotic Party (NPP), Bernard Antwi Boasioko over their alleged involvement in illegal mining.

 

The union is also demanding a probe into the allegations.

 

 

Though the two have denied the allegations brought forth by the Minority in Parliament, the union has said it has enough evidence.

Some chiefs in the Amansie Central District also said that the two were involved in illegal mining in the Apampram Forest Reserve.

 

“We have ample evidence to prove that the very public officer into whose care the nation’s forests have been entrusted is neck deep in ravaging the bellies of some of the most virgin of forest reserves for gold, under the guise of ‘reclamation’,” a statement from the union said.

 

“Our long-held stance has been vindicated by the chiefs of the Amansie Traditional Area in the Ashanti region who have openly accused Sir John and no mean a person than the Ashanti Regional Chairman of the ruling NPP, Bernard Antwi Boasiako alias ‘Chairman Wontumi’ of engaging in galamsey deep inside the Apampram Forest Reserve in the Amansie Central District.”

 

Calling the actions corrupt, the union has said a swift probe is now necessary.

 

“We find the attitudes of Sir John and Wontumi not only deviant but also as corrupt, stinking and rotten to the core, that it calls for the swift and unhindered action by the investigative machinery of the state.”

 

The union insists that this move will showcase the government’s seriousness in the fight against illegal mining.

 

“The CSSMUG wishes to entreat all Ghanaians to treat the government’s so-called fight against galamsey with the impunity it deserves if Sir John and Chairman Wontumi are not arrested to make way for investigations into the allegations against them.”

 

Find below the full statement

 

Arrest Sir John and Wontumi for engaging in ‘galamsey’ – CSSMUG

 

The Concerned Small Scale Miners Union of Ghana (CSSMUG) demands the immediate suspension and arrest of the Chief Executive Officer of the Forestry Commission, Kwadwo Owusu Afriyie alias ‘Sir John’ for desecrating his office by engaging in galamsey activities.

 

We have ample evidence to prove that the very public officer into whose care the nation’s forests have been entrusted is neck deep ravaging the bellies of some of the most virgin of forest reserves for gold, under the guise of ‘reclamation’.

 

Our long-held stance has been vindicated by the chiefs of the Amansie Traditional Area in the Ashanti region who have openly accused Sir John and no mean a person than the Ashanti Regional Chairman of the ruling NPP, Bernard Antwi Boasiako alias ‘Chairman Wontumi’ of engaging in galamsey deep inside the Apampram Forest Reserve in the Amansie Central District.

 

The government’s deafening silence over this matter weeks after the chiefs’ public outburst, apart from being surprising also suggests to us that it is not committed to the fight against illegal mining as it wants the world to believe.

 

We wish to remind President Nana Akufo Addo that he has a personal pledge to keep; that he would cause to be investigated any of his appointees against whom allegations of corruption would be leveled.

 

We find the attitudes of Sir John and Wontumi not only deviant but also as corrupt, stinking and rotten to the core, that it calls for the swift and unhindered action by the investigative machinery of the state.

 

The two Deputy Chiefs of Staff, the Deputy Minister of Sports, the Board Chairman of the National Sports Authority, the former CEO of BOST and others were either investigated, suspended or sacked based on mere allegations, in a bid to demonstrate the President’s discontentment with malfeasance by public officers; Mr President, why the loud silence now.

 

Even if President Akufo Addo has no regard for the complaints of Small Scale Miners, would he say he has no reverence for the chiefs of Amansie, whose people are some of the most avowed electorates of his largest constituency, the Ashanti region?

 

If President Akufo Addo and his government do not respect the votes he gained from Amansie which aided him to occupy his office today, would he also not respect the chiefs, the main custodians of the lands who feel they are been robbed of the riches of their inheritance by the two top NPP figures?

 

The CSSMUG wishes to entreat all Ghanaians to treat the government’s so-called fight against galamsey with the impunity it deserves if Sir John and Chairman Wontumi are not arrested to make way for investigations into the allegations against them.

 

Fellow Ghanaians, we also wish to call for the dissolution of the Interministerial Taskforce against Galamsey and the disbandment of the Operation Vanguard since they have failed to show anything for the expenses on them, more than a year into their operations.

 

Finally, we wish to warn that, we will not hesitate to order all our members to go back to their various concessions to immediately start work since the failure of government to investigate Sir John and Wontumi would mean to us, a lack of commitment to the fight against galamsey it so touts.

 

Signed

 

Michael Kwadwo Peprah
President

 

 

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