Mining companies urged to protect water bodies
5/13/2012 6:00:19 PM -
Afosu (E/R), May 12, GNA - Mr Stephen Ackah, Deputy Minister for Local Government and Rural Development, has appealed to mining companies to apply responsible methods in their operations to ensure the safety of the people and water bodies in the communities.
He said the application of a more responsible method would prevent environmental degradation, to safeguard the health of the people.
'Issues of cyanide spillage and environmental degradation are rampant in most mining areas, especially where surface mining is the main process.'
Mr Ackah was speaking at the matriculation and promotion ceremony of the Newmont Golden Ridge Limited apprenticeship programme at Afosu, on Saturday.
He said government was aware of conflicts that sometimes occurred between licensed mining companies and illegal mining groups over the land area being mined.
Mr Ackah therefore advised 'galamsey operators' to desist from encroaching illegally on licensed mining zones.
He lauded the initiative by Newmont Golden Ridge, adding that, it was in line with government's commitment to create jobs for the youth of the country by equipping them with the requisite skills to fit into the job market.
Mr Ackah encouraged Newmont Golden Ridge to continue with the programme to promote local economic development of basic infrastructure in the community.
He entreated the Birim North District Assembly to forge a good relationship with the company to facilitate their work and to jointly undertake the development of the basic infrastructure for the benefit of the people in the area.
'The strategy taken by Newmont Golden Ridge to build the capacity of our youth is worth emulating by other firms in the industry'.
Mr Ackah also appealed to other companies to come out with similar programmes to open up employment opportunities for the people in the local communities where they operate.
The Minister used the platform to appeal to all to try to avert tension, chaos and acrimony, especially during their interaction at whatever platform that they may find themselves.
'All ethnocentric incitements and hate-talks should be condemned in no uncertain terms by all Ghanaians, irrespective of whatever quarters it emanates', Mr Ackah added.
'This is an election year and nobody should remind us of the peace that we need to see through a free, fair and transparent election'.
Mr Felix Apoh, External Affairs Manager, Newmont Golden Ridge, earlier in his welcoming address, said their learning and development department was responsible for the training of the apprentices.
He said graduates from the programme would acquire an international recognition and a City and Guilds of London Craft Certificate in collaboration with the company.