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10.07.2005 Business & Finance

Osagyefo orders BGL to suspend operations

GNA

Tarkwa (W/R), July 10, GNA - The Omanhene of Wassa Fiase Traditional Area, Osagyefo Kwamina Enimil VI, has ordered the Management of Bogoso Gold Limited (BGL) to suspend its operations at Prestea for two weeks.

The Omanhene has also directed that a seven-member committee should be set up immediately to access the operations of BGL and come out with a report within the same period to enable the traditional council find amicable solution to the problems between BGL and the Prestea community.

Osagyefo Kwamina Enimil gave the directive at a meeting held on Sunday with chiefs and opinion leaders of the Prestea community and the Management of BGL.

The meeting was a follow-up to a previous meeting with the Omanhene by the Prestea community and BGL on how to find an amicable solution to the problems facing both the community and the company.

He said the Seven-Member Committee would have representatives from BGL, Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), Minerals Commission, Mines Department, Prestea community and Wassa West District Assembly (WWDA).

The Omanhene said the committee should work within the two weeks and come out with its findings to enable the company continue with its operations.

Nana Kwesi Boadi, Juantuahene of Himan, who spoke on behalf of the Prestea community said the company has not given any heed to the ultimatum given to it to stop its blasting operations in the town, which is posing so many health hazards to the inhabitants, but had rather increased the pace of work.

He said the Prestea community still stands on the issue of the company resettling them or move three miles away from the town. Nana Kwesi Boadi said currently, the only fuel filling station serving the entire town has been destroyed forcing them to buy fuel at a higher price from the wayside dealers

Nana Richard Hagan, Community Safety and Environment Manager of BGL, who represented the management told the gathering that the company could not operate without work permit and that the company went through the right procedure before starting with its operations. He said every month government agencies like the EPA, Minerals Commission and the Mines Department access the activities of BGL and reports are sent to the government, adding that, since these agencies had not come out with any negative report about its operations, it has every right to work.

Nana Hagan added that, it could be that some of the agencies, which work on behalf of the government, are not doing their work properly. He appealed to the Omanhene to impress upon the committee to come out with its report within the time frame to enable the company continue its work.

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