Government committed to peace, sustainable development in extractive sector – Mike Hammah

Mike Hammah – Minister of Lands and Natural Resources

The Minister of Lands and Natural Resources, Mr. Mike Allen Hammah, has reiterated government’s commitment and determination to foster peaceful co-existence between mining companies and local mine communities.

He said peace and harmony among stakeholders in the extractive industry would enhance mutual benefits and sustainable development, and noted that the passage of the Mineral and Mining Regulations law, Act 703 of 2008 required that the various stakeholders in the mining sector abide by the new legal regime.

Mr. Hammah said this in a speech read on his behalf at a signing ceremony of Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) Agreement between the Golden Star Resources Limited (GSRL) of Bogoso/Prestea Mine and communities within its operational area at Bogoso on Wednesday.

The Minister said the CSR principles were rooted in the national agenda of ensuring socio-economic transformation of local mine communities, and commended Professor Daniel Mireku Gyimah’s Mediation Committee that facilitated the smooth negotiation between the GSRL and the nine communities affected by the company’s operations for doing a yeoman’s job.

In his welcome address, Mr. Jerry Agala, General Manager of GSRL, New Century Mine, stated that there were some disagreements between the company and its host communities on some aspects of its operations about two years ago, which brought mistrust and acrimony between them.

However, he said, after almost two years of deliberations on the impasse moderated by Prof. Mireku Gyimah, the immediate past vice chancellor of the University of Mines and Technology, the two parties came to a consensus for public endorsement of the compact.

The CSR Agreement spelt out the criteria for sharing the revenue meant for the local mine communities in order to ensure transparency and accountability. The components for the CSR Agreement include relationship and sustainable livelihood, development foundation and local employment.

Mr. John Milla, Mr. Daniel Owiredu, a senior vice president of GSRL and Mr. Jerry Agala, General Manager of GSRL, New Century Mine, signed the compact on behalf of the company, while the paramount chief of Wassa Fiase Traditional Area and some of his sub-chiefs initialed for the local mine communities.

Osagyefo Kwamina Enimil VI, President of Wassa Fiase Traditonal Council, applauded the commitment exhibited by the management of the GSRL throughout the negotiation process and entreated them to show same commitment in the implementation stage.

He pledged the cooperation of the chiefs and people of Wassa Fiase Traditional Area towards a successful execution of the compact.

Source: GNA

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