The government will from today [Monday] begin vetting of all small-scale miners in the country.
This is part of efforts to sanitize the country’s mining industry and ensure that persons engaged in the commercial activity do so in a responsible, environmentally-friendly and sustainable manner.
The Ministry of Information in an earlier statement directed all registered artisanal and small-scale miners whose licenses were operational as at April 1, 2017 to submit all relevant documentation to the Inter-Ministerial Committee on Illegal Mining (IMCIM) Secretariat by post or in person before Friday, September 7, 2018.
The documents they are expected to present including Mining License, Environmental Permit, Operating Permit, Certificate of Registration, Tax Identification Number, two copies of passport size photos, Birth Certificate, Passport or Voter’s ID and current contact details for the vetting.
Persons who pass the vetting will be cleared to return to the mines when the government eventually lifts its 2017 ban on all forms of small-scale mining activities.
Prof. Frimpong Boateng Chairman of the Inter-Ministerial Task-force against illegal mining at a press briefing last month said the outcome of the vetting process will influence the government’s decision on the ban .
“If the vetting goes on well then we will know when exactly the ban will be lifted,” he said.
Gov’t to lift the ban on small-scale mining by December
The government has already hinted that it may lift the ban on all forms of small-scale mining by the end of 2018.
The government was compelled to issue the ban in 2017, at the time illegal mining was destroying the county’s land and water resources.
Analysts warned that Ghana might resort to the importation of clean water in the next two decades if the threat was not eradicated.
Professor Frimpong Boateng, Chairman of the Inter-ministerial Task-force Against Illegal Mining, was optimistic that small-scale miners would be able to return to work by December.
Some small-scale miners have been complaining about the ban which they say is severely affecting their livelihood.
Governmentt launches new software to fight galamsey
The inter-ministerial task-force on Galamsey has however adopted what it calls technology-driven strategies to combat illegal mining.
Key among the technologies is a software called Galamstop, which will monitor the activities of illegal miners.
Professor Kwabena Frimpong Boateng said the team hopes the innovations lead to the lifting of the ban
“These are things that have been pledged at this conference in the fight against illegal mining. The integration of activities of these regulatory agencies through a computer application we call ‘Galamstop’. The Minerals Commission, EPA, Water Resources Commission, Forestry Commission, our current DCEs will be integrated through this software application.”