Encroachment on AngloGold Ashanti’s Obuasi Mine concession worrying – Minister

Illegal small-scale miners encroaching on the AngloGold Ashanti’s (AGA) Obuasi Mine concession at Kokoteasua in the Ashanti Region, have been warned to stay off the enclave in their own interest.

They have no right to conduct any mining activities within the AGA’s concession, Mr. Simon Osei-Mensah, the Regional Minister, stated.

According to him, the Regional Security Council (REGSEC) was determined to deal ruthlessly with those who flouted the country’s mining regulations, saying, the authorities would work assiduously to avert any occurrence likely to stoke tension in the mining community.

“The plain truth is that, these unhealthy practices, if allowed to continue, could stall the operations of the AGA, therefore, all illegal mining activities within the Obuasi Mine enclave are prohibited,” he emphasized.

Kokoteasua, a suburb of the Obuasi Municipality, had in recent times seen an increase in illegal small-scale mining activities (Galamsey), especially within the prohibited areas.

Mr. Osei-Mensah, who was speaking at a ceremony at Obuasi, to inaugurate and hand-over a fully-furnished rehabilitation and training centre for persons with disabilities, assured that the government was committed to supporting AGA to succeed in its activities.

“Since the coming of AGA, the Obuasi community has seen improvement in the socio-economic lives of the people.

“We will as such not sit unconcerned while a few greedy people take the law into their own hands at the expense of the people’s overall interest,” the REGSEC Chairman said.

The rehabilitation and training centre was constructed by the AGA Obuasi Mine at the cost of GH¢663, 688.00, and is expected to benefit the disability community at Obuasi and its environs.

The facility consists of a workshop, administrative block and conference hall.

Courses to be rolled out encompass electronic and electrical repairs, leatherworks, fashion and designing.

Dr. Eric Asubonteng, Managing Director, AGA Obuasi Mine, indicated that all equipment, furniture and materials needed for the effective functioning of the centre had been provided.

These include sewing machines, office and conference furniture, projector, materials for leather and sewing works, amongst others.

The overall objective, according to the Managing Director, was to enhance the employability of persons with disabilities through quality and demand-driven skills.

Dr. Asubonteng said the facility would run short courses on disability rights, development and policies, and also set up a production unit to generate income to run the centre successfully.

AGA had resolved to optimize the relevance and visibility of all organizations for persons with disability through the provision of a one-stop platform for support and collaboration on disability rights advocacy.

The mining company, he said, believed in the promotion of diversity and inclusion in the society, specifically supporting sustainable capacity development of persons with disability in and around Obuasi.

The Reverend John Mefful, National President, Ghana Society of the Physically Disabled, lauded Management of the AGA Obuasi Mine for responding to the needs of their members.

Source: GNA

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