Committee asked to review report
The Youth and Concerned Citizens Association of Nkroful, Teleku-Bokazo and Anwia have called on the seven-member committee that investigated disturbances in the area last year to review its findings and recommendations to ensure lasting peace and tranquility in the communities.
At a press conference in Takoradi, Mr Stephen Donkor, the chairman, said the association is dissatisfied with some of the findings and recommendations of the committee set by the Western Regional Coordinating Council under the chairmanship of Ms Patience Klinogo, Chief State Attorney in-charge of the region.
He said it is not correct that the flushing out of galamsey operators in the three communities contributed to the disturbances as stated in the committee's report.
Mr Donkor said the committee did not thoroughly take into account some of the concerns of the communities, which generated into the disturbances.
He said the communities were opposed to surface mining proposed by the Adamus Resources Limited because the inhabitants were predominantly farmers and were in favour of underground mining.
Mr Donkor said although some people, including the chiefs of Teleku-Bokazo and Anwia engaged in galamsey for few months, the flushing out of galamsey operators should not be linked to the disturbance because it was a national exercise.
Mr Donkor said the people of Teleku-Bokazo and Anwia, who were the focus of the disturbances, did not make any attempt to legalise galamsey as stated in the report.
He said, "We have not in any circumstance asked any concession owner to release any 25 acres of land for our operations as claimed by the report".
Mr Donkor said it is also unacceptable for the committee to suggest that the youth and concerned citizens have the backing of the Member of Parliament of the area as claimed by the chiefs of Teleku-Bokazo and Anwia.
He said, "The issue is that our chiefs seem to have forgotten their basic duty of representing the views and interest of their subjects".
Mr Donkor said, "The report also has it that the single most immediate factor that triggered the disturbances is the attack on the tanker driver of Adamus Resources limited and the Policemen on duty at the time".
He said, "We believe that this is an overturned fact and the reason being that the Policemen had been on duty several months before the incident occurred" adding, "It was rather the unprofessional conduct exhibited by the Policemen by shooting some members of the crowd that led to the subsequent attack on them".
Mr Donkor said for lasting peace to be maintained in the area, the bonding and prosecution of some natives identified as rioters should be discarded for all parties involved in the issue to have a level playing field.