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16.06.2005 Crime & Punishment

Two AngloGold Ashanti workers arrested for 'galamsey' operations


Obuasi, June 16, GNA - Two employees of AngloGold Ashanti (Obuasi) were on Wednesday arrested underground for illegally mining for gold. Daniel Boateng and John Nartey, both workers at the Sinking and Projects Department of the Mine, were arrested by a special operations team of the Police, the Mine Security personnel and staff of the Engineering Section of the Mine.

The team, which was led by Nana Kwabena Kyeremeh, a shift boss, was detailed by management of the mine to search for illegal miners after receiving information that they were operating underground at levels four to eight at the George Cappendell Shaft (GCS). Each level is 100 feet down. Boateng and Nartey were dispatched to work at level eight but managed to sneak to that level to operate illegally for gold but they ran out of luck.

Though no illegal operator was seen at those levels the team inspected, it was established that some illegal miners had worked there especially at level four, where the team saw used torchlight batteries, mining explosives and some abandoned quartz. Explaining the rationale behind the exercise, Nana Kyeremeh said a team had earlier visited those levels upon hearing that some illegal miners were operating there to dismantle some ladders, which could support the illegal miners to freely operate between the levels four and eight. He said the team's operation was aimed at rescuing any illegal miner trapped as a result of dismantling parts of those ladders and the platforms.

However, after inspecting all corners of those levels no illegal miner was spotted as having been trapped except the two. The company has for some years stopped mining at those levels and as a result the illegal miners wanted to cash in.