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28.09.2005 General News

Stop surface mining, EPA orders BGL

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Prestea (W/R), Sept 28, GNA - The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has ordered the Bogoso Gold Limited (BGL) to stop surface mining at Prestea.

The order followed the failure of BGL to put in place mitigating measures contained in its Environmental Impact Statement. The measures included; sensitisation of the people to the possible impact of mining activities, construction of a by-pass road around the Ghana Commercial Bank to the Government Hospital in Prestea and the relocation of the Prestea Police Station and Barracks. BGL's inability to implement what were spelt out in the Environmental Permit for the Plant North Project at Prestea contravened the law hence the order.

This came to light when Members of Parliamentary Select Committee on Environment, Science and Technology visited some mining companies in the Wassa West District to acquaint themselves with environmental issues in the area.

The companies visited were the Anglogold Ashanti (Iduapriem) Mine, Ghana Manganese Company and the Bogoso Gold Limited. Speaking in an interview with the Ghana News Agency (GNA), Mr. Alpheaus Anthony Cann Andoh, Director of Mining of the EPA, said every permit had its conditions, which had to be complied with, but BGL failed to do so.

He said the idea was that where BGL is mining at the moment there would be blasting, which would be close to the town and EPA expected them to comply with what were contained in the Environmental Impact statement.

Mr. Andoh said BGL should have cordon-off the mining area so that people could not see the mine pit and other aforementioned factors, which made EPA to ask BGL to halt activities in the pit until it had put all mitigating measures in place after, which EPA would inspect before re-considering its stand. 28 Sept 05