Local mining company in Takoradi, Western Region, Western Goldfields Limited, has called on President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo to intervene in re-granting and renewal of the forest access permit to the company to restart mining activities in the Bowiye Range Forest Reserve.
A four-page petition dated January 23, 2018 to President Akufo-Addo through Deputy Minister of Lands and Natural Resources in-charge of Mining, Mrs.Barbara Oteng-Gyasi, stated that the company, which legally acquired the access permit and certificate from the government to operate mining activities in the Bowiye Forest Reserve, has been suspended since 1963, without any logical reasons.
The petition, which was copied to the Chief of Staff at the Flagstaff House, Executive Director of Forestry Commission, Chief Executive Office of Minerals Commission of Ghana and Perseus Mining Ghana Limited, called on the President to ensure that the company is “re-granted and its concession renewed to help them start work in order to create employment for the teeming unemployed youth in the country.
Signed by Concessionaire of the Western Goldfields Limited, Mr. Ralph Alidu Mohammed, alias Nana Mahama and copied to Today in Accra, the petition noted that the company’s concession #61 comprises the Bowiye Range Forest Reserve and Non-Forest Reserve as indicated in the Minerals Commission of Ghana Prospecting Lease Mining Right in 1989.
“Incremental Operations expanded the Bowiye Range Forest Reserve to 67.9gsg.km and the Non-Forest Reserve to 64.00sk.km,” it revealed.
Speaking in an interview with Today, Mr. Mohammed explained that the company re-affirmed its operations in the forest through the Forestry Commission before the moratorium was placed on activities in the forest reserves in March 1996.
He asserted that Forestry Commission has confirmed and acknowledged that it has granted the company Forest access permit to mine in the Bowiye Forest Reserve,” showing the two letters written by the Forestry Commission to that effect to support his claim that indeed it was granted access permit to work in the forest reserve.
He stated that in 1996 when the moratorium was established over forest reserves, the law was to investigate companies operating in forest reserves through their application and acquisitions of the forest reserves.
“With these brief synopsis, one can clearly and critically understand that the Western Goldfields Limited is overly established in the Bowiye Range Forest Reserve and the non-forest reserve,” Mr Mohammed added.
Minerals & Mining Matters
…with Freeman KORYEKPOR AWLESU