ACCRA, Ghana(TWN-Af)-24 October, 2005 -- Richard Adjei-Poku, Field Officer of Kenyasi-based non-governmental organisation Guards of the Earth and the Vulnerable, has shed more light on the drowning in a dam created by Newmont, a gold mining company, operating in the Kenyasi area, in the Brong Ahafo region. He was speaking to newsmen at a press conference facilitated by TWN-Af on 21 October.
He maintained how two of the villagers, in their attempt to cross a so-called bridge, became victims of the negligence of Newmont Gold Ghana Limited, which is the world?s largest gold-producer.
The creation of the dam has disrupted community life by separating villages that previously shared the water of the Subri River, which has now been dammed. The effect is that people have to work seven miles to visit the other side of the divided community or take their chance by crossing the dam access.
In fact, access might just be a misnomer. The so-called route consisted of heaps of sand deposited in the river Subri, separating the Dokyikrom area from other communities. At some point, this pseudo-bridge was going to create casualties?not to mention fatalities.
Responding to questions by newsmen, Adjei-Poku suggested that these recent deaths only served to highlight how critical it was for the public to be aware of the operations of these multinational mining companies, who had fallen foul of providing compensation for those villagers whose lives they had made unsustainable.
Adjei-Poku argued that sustainability of the communities in which they operate remains key as far as these companies were concerned.
Newmont has active mines in Canada, Bolivia, Australia, Indonesia?to name but four. It has remained at the centre of much controversy by civil society organizations working on mining ever since it came into the country in 2003.
For more information, please contact Emmanuel.k.Bensah at [email protected], or +126.96.36.1999.