- The 32 suspected illegal miners arrested in the Atewa forest have been granted bail
- Their bail comes after accusing the presidency of being aware of their nefarious activities in the forest
- They were admitted to bail of GHc350,000 with two sureties to be justified
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The illegal miners arrested in the Atewa Forest have finally been granted bail.
The Koforidua Circuit Court ‘B’ admitted each of them to bail of GHc350,000 with two sureties to be justified, Starrfm.com.gh reports.
It will be recalled the 32 accused persons took the nation by surprise when they said they were sanctioned to mine in the Atewa forest by the presidency.
They made the bombshell disclosure on Monday, May 24, 2021, after the court presided by Her Honour Mercy Adei Kotei denied them bail, YEN.com.gh reported earlier.
The Court presided by Her Honour Mercy Adei Kotei granted the 32 accused persons bail after the prosecution expressed no opposition to their bail request.
Dickson Donkor, an assistant State Attorney, who is the lead prosecuting officer in the case told the court during the hearing on June 8, 2021, that the charge sheet had been substituted, thus, the state has no opposition to plea for bail for the accused by the defence counsel.
The case has been adjourned to July 7, 2021.
Starrfm.com.gh reports that the accused persons erupted into a jubilant mood, singing praises to God.
“Y3 da woase ooo yeyi woay3 ohene k3seiii Hallelujah, who say man no dey,” some of them were heard saying.
Burning excavators, chan fans
In other news, some 28 excavators and 267 chan fans seized from illegal small-scale miners in the River Pra in the Eastern Region have been destroyed by the Operation Halt II team, YEN.com.gh earlier reported.
The team also destroyed 18 water pumping machines, 2 industrial machines, 18 generator sets, 10 plastic chairs, 5 canoes, 1 wooden accommodation, 8 industrial batteries, 1 platform, and 21 new pumping machines, Classfmonline reported.
Defence Minister, Dominic Nitiwul, said a total of 476 chan fans were destroyed in the past week.
The Ghana Armed Forces (GAF) commenced the second phase of Operation Halt II on May 7, 2021.
Operation Halt II aims at removing all persons and logistics involved in mining on water bodies.
President Akufo-Addo gave an order for the deployment of soldiers to mining areas to clamp down on activities by illegal miners.
The soldiers, numbering 200 were poled together to undertake this operation which started on Wednesday morning, April 28, 2021, at 6 am.
The deployed soldiers were expected to remove all those engaging in the illegal act and also destroy the logistics involved in mining from Ghana’s water bodies.