A joint police and anti-illegal mining taskforce of the Small-Scale Miners Association in the Ashanti Region has swooped on three mining communities in the Atwima Mponua district to clamp down on ‘galamseyers’ who have defied the government’s directive to stop all illegal mining activities in the country.
The taskforce, led by the Atwima Mponua District Police Commander ASP Andrews Aboagye, confiscated and set ablaze a total of 14 ‘Chang Fan’ machines which were anchored on the Offin River, defiantly mining for the precious mineral at Bontomuruso, Achiase, and Atuntuma.
No arrest was, however, made as the defiant illegal miners took to their heels upon seeing the taskforce; others who had informants in the towns fled from the sites before the taskforce could reach there.
The queenmother of Atuntuma, Nana Afrah Saah, together with some Unit Committee members, were said to be the owners of some of the machines.
The leader of the Ashanti regional anti-illegal mining taskforce, Bresi Andoh, said they embarked on the mission to demonstrate to the whole country that licensed small-scale miners are not behind the mining on water bodies and that they frown on same.
He assured of their commitment to flush out all illegal miners to pave the way for a more regularised and law-backed mining in the country.
The anti-illegal mining taskforce was set up by the Small-Scale Miners Association in the Ashanti Region a fortnight ago to clamp down on recalcitrant galamsey operators who are still engaged in illegal mining, despite the nationwide ban.