- NDC's Mahama Ayariga says the use of Operation Vanguard is unnecessary
- He says menace of galamsey should be tackled at the root cause
A former Environment Minister, Mahama Ayariga is saying the deployment of joint military and Police task force by the New Patriotic Party administration in fighting illegal mining is unnecessary.
According to Mahama Ayariga, the approach adopted by ‘Operation Vanguard’ amounts to the use of excessive force by the military in fighting illegal mining menace.
Mahama Ayariga speaking on Joy FM’s News File accused state agencies responsible for issuing mining licenses of conniving with other companies to encumber mining concessions denying permits to many Ghanaian community youth.
“So young people that we are encouraging to engage in legal mining, anytime they go for a permit, they are told someone has already obtained the concession, the place is encumbered. And after several years, they just start mining,” Mahama Ayariga explained how illegal mining activities escalated across the country.
The New Patriotic Party (NPP) in few weeks ago commissioned a joint Military-police team called Operation Vanguard in an effort to scale up the fight against illegal mining activities.
The 400 security task force in their operations have resulted to the death of five illegal miners in various sites in Eastern, Ashante and Western Regions.
Several mining equipment’s including heavy earth-moving excavators have been seized with others setting ablaze.
This the Bawku Central Member of Parliament says the use of military is a wrong approach in talking the menace.
The NDC man argues that, appropriate state agencies must be rather vigilant and deal with the issues at the root cause.
“The Military [deployment] is absolutely unnecessary. We don’t need whole armed forces there. We just need to figure out the systems and work on the systems,” he suggested.
According to him, the size of earth moving machines that find their way to and operate at mining sites would only escape authorities unless there is collusion with state agencies.
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