NORPRA commends government for action against Cassius Mining Limited
It also lauded the Attorney-General and Minister of Justice and the Minister of Lands and Natural Resources for their directive to the Registrar-General’s Department to take action against the directors.
This was in a statement signed by the Executive Director of NORPRA, Mr Bismark Adongo Ayorogo and copied to the Ghana News Agency on Saturday.
It said a letter from the Office of the Attorney-General and Minister of Justice to the Registrar-General and copied to NORPRA following its petition for the State to investigate the mining company, requested that action be taken against Cassius Mining Limited.
The letter partly stated that; “in view of the conviction of Anthony Upul Samantha and Radwin Elhassan they are barred from being directors in Cassius Mining Company by virtue of Section 177 of Act 992,” the statement said.
It stated that the petition was equally presented to the Minister of Lands and Natural Resources and the Minister of the Interior and that NORPRA was glad to see a letter from the Minerals Commission under the instruction of the Minister responsible for Mines addressed to Cassius Mining Limited to refuse their request.
The letter stated: “…we regret to inform you that the Hon. Minister responsible for Mines has considered your request but is unable to approve it because of following reason(s);
“1) You concealed and or suppressed the fact that Messrs Anthony Upul Samantha and Radwin Elhassan, Listed as directors and shareholders of Cassius Mining Limited, (the “Company”) in the company’s incorporation documents submitted in support of the application for PL have been convicted for various offences in Australia and thus not qualified to have been named directors of the company under the companies legislation of Ghana at the time of applying for the PL.
“2) The company would not have been legally established with the above officers being part of its promoters and subsequently part of its directors if they had fully disclosed their criminal past prior to applying for the PL.
“3) The suppression of the foregoing vitiating material facts, clearly known to the Company, at the time of applying for the PL, meant the Company’s application for the PL and for extension of same, contained a statement which was misleading or false in relation to the legal capacity of the said directors and same is a breach of Regulation 107 (1) (b) of the Minerals and Mining (Licensing) Regulations, 2012 (L.I. 2176.)
The statement said NORPRA therefore considered it heart-warming and appropriate to recognize, appreciate and commend the ministries for their high level of responsiveness.
It stated that the NORPRA had conducted a study on Beneficial Ownership Disclosure and Integrity Screening of Mining Companies in Ghana and found that, Ghana, having signed onto the Open Governance Partnership (OGP) in 2014 needed to strengthen its Beneficial Ownership Disclosure regime and Due Diligence system to be able to effectively identify and keep high-risk companies out of the country and ensuring that only honest and responsible mining companies with a strong business integrity track-record were granted mineral rights.
NORPRA is a civil society organisation with a vision of a “Society without poverty, inequalities, injustice and insecurity” and is into research, public policy advocacy in the areas of natural resource governance, agriculture, water and sanitation and empowerment of young people, women and persons with disability for poverty eradication and sustainable equitable development.