FEATURED: Why Are Black People Obsessed With The Bible That Was Used To Enslave ...

31.10.2008 Business & Finance

Rescue Mining Communities -Wacam

By ISD (Darling Maame Efua Cann)
The Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Wassa Association of Communities Affected by Mining (WACAM), Mr Daniel Owusu-Koranteng, has called on government to rescue some mining communities by declaring forest reserves and some strategic areas as 'No Go Zones, for mining.   He stated that Ghana is touted to be a mineral-rich country, occupying 10th position in global gold production and yet ranked 135th out of 177 countries in Human Developmental Index of 2007.   This, he said, is an example of a paradox of plenty, which can be explained by the fact that Ghana is mining at a loss, adding that Ghana retained 5% from total mineral revenues of about one billion dollars in 2003, 'this implies that the country loses a lot of revenues through generous concessions granted the mining companies.'   Speaking at the 10th anniversary celebration of WACAM yesterday in Accra, Mr  Owusu Koranteng said, over the years, activities of some mining companies at strategic areas have adversely affected the lives of people living in mining communities and gradually lost the Ghanaian cultural identity in the process.   He, therefore, called on the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) not to grant some mining companies the permit to carry out their activities as a way of expressing government's commitment to the protection of the remaining forests.   The Presiding Bishop of the Methodist Church of Ghana, the Most Reverend Dr Aboagye Mensah, noted that the report on the State of Human Rights in Mining Communities in Ghana published by Commission on   Human Rights and Administrative Justice, Ghana in March 2008 indicates that there is the evidence of widespread violations of human rights of individual members of communities and communities' collective rights in some mining areas in the country.   He added his voice to the call against mining in forest reserves in the country by pointing out to Ghanaians to be conscious of the fact that 'God has entrusted to us his creation as stewards and we have to till and manage it responsibly.'   Responsible stewardship, he said, challenges human beings to exploit the earth which is the lord's with the understanding that our human survival depends very much on the way we treat the earth and the entire ecological system.