President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo has launched a Community Mining Programme (CMP) at Wassa Akropong, in the Western Region.
The Community Mining Programme is aimed at formalizing mining in selected communities across the country.
With at least one community mine expected to be set up in each of the mining districts in the country, the community mines are expected to provide job openings for over 4,500 miners that were trained by the government at the University of Mines and Technology (UMaT), Tarkwa.
At the ceremony to launch the pilot programme on Wednesday, President Akufo-Addo said the Community Mining Programme would ensure that "mining will be done the right way, within the tenets of the law, and will not destroy our natural resources."
He said, "Today, we are launching a type of mining that will benefit all of us. I am here to plead with the young men who are participating in the community mining to do their best to adhere to all the laws and do a good job so that money will return to Wassa Amenfi. The money will come."
He assured that the programme would be replicated in other towns in Ghana by September this year, and would be closely monitored to ensure that the standards that have been set for the CMP are adhered to.
The Chairperson of the Inter-Ministerial Committee on Illegal Mining, Prof. Kwabena Frimpong Boateng said the Minerals Commission had acquired several zones in each of the mining districts for this purpose, with some traditional authorities also providing land for the CMP.
He said some large-scale mining companies have shed off areas to be used for the CMP, and, between now and September, concessions for the various CMP would be mapped out by the IMCIM Mapping Team and uploaded onto the GalamStop software.
Prof. Frimpong Boateng stressed that canoes fitted with outboard motors have been procured for the Riverine Team to monitor the water bodies.
"With the rolling out of the CMP, there should be no excuse whatsoever for miners to be mining illegally in the water bodies," he added.