Ghana: Responsible Small Scale Mining, the Way to Go - Vice President Bawumia

24 December 2021

Vice President Dr Mahamudu Bawumia (Right) presenting the overall award to Bright Kwabena Obeng of Obeng Mining Ventures

Vice President Dr Mahamudu Bawumia has said often Ghana's problem solving has focused more on chasing and punishing wrongdoers, and less on recognising and rewarding those who do right.

Speaking at the Responsible Small Scale Mining Awards to provide public affirmation for those who operate within the law, Vice President Bawumia said the award was to recognise players in the small-scale mining space who, despite the temptation to join the wrongdoers, had stayed within the relevant regulatory framework of the country and operate responsibly.

Vice President Bawumia said that despite its significant contribution to Ghana's economy, gold mining, especially small-scale mining's have harmed the country's forests, water bodies and farming.

Small scale mining, he noted, was not only competing with agriculture for land but was damaging water bodies and imposing huge costs on water systems, hence the government's decision to re-engineer the governance framework of the sector through diverse interventions to sanitise the SSM sub-sector.

The government, he indicated, would continue to play its watchdog role in ensuring compliance with the law while working with stakeholders to address the growing complexities in the mining sector.

"As a government, the responsibility of being accountable for the stewardship of this sector by ensuring good governance in the exploitation of the minerals resources is not lost on us. We will continue to implement policies that will bring about a win-win situation for both government and industry players through effective collaboration with all well-meaning stakeholders like the Ghana Association of Small-Scale Miners," he assured.

Dr Bawumia commended the Small-Scale Miners, saying, "To the membership of the Ghana Small Scale Miners Association (GNASSM), I wish to acknowledge your cooperation with the government in the implementation of the various interventions.

"Even though some of these interventions have affected you in one way or the other, most of you decided to work with the government in streamlining the sector by doing the right thing.

"It is, therefore, worthwhile recognising your efforts for choosing to regularise your activities and continue to apply yourselves well to the obligations imposed on you by your mineral rights.

"I believe the awards will go a long way to motivate you to continue doing the right things when they matter most. The award should also increase your sense of responsibility in the generality of your membership towards the natural environment. So that we shall together achieve the desired sustainability for the subsector."

Bright Kwabena Obeng of Obeng Mining Ventures was adjudged the Overall Best Small-Scale Miner.

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