A 15-member committee has been inaugurated to spearhead the eviction of illegal small-scale miners from the 273 Sq km concession of AngloGold Ashanti (AGA) within a month.
Those to be evicted are to be assisted to regularise their operations with the Minerals Commission and relocated to the land apportioned to licensed small-scale miners at Obuasi.
AngloGold Ashanti relinquished 60 per cent of its original 633 Sq km concession for allocation to licensed small-scale miners.
So far, 70 illegal mining groups have been identified to be assisted to legalise their operations with the commission.
The committee is headed by Mr Kwaku Frimpong Kumah from the Office of the President, with three representatives each of the commission, the Small-Scale Miners Association and AGA.
Also on the committee are two representatives of the Obuasi Municipal Assembly, one each from the Ghana Chamber of Mines, the Obuasi District Police Command and the Adansi Traditional Council.
Inaugurating the committee in Obuasi last Wednesday, the Director of Policy Planning, Monitoring and Evaluation at the Commission, Mr Richard Kofi Afenu, said the government was sending a clear signal of its commitment to assist investors in resolving challenges encountered in the course of their operations.
He said in collaboration with the Minerals Commission, the committee would develop and implement a road map to ensure the peaceful exit of the unlicensed small-scale miners to the demarcated areas within the lease area surrendered by AGA.
He said among the four-point mandate, the committee was also to assist in the formation of small-scale mining cooperatives to enable them to apply for small-scale mining concessions in the surrendered area.
The Municipal Chief Executive of Obuasi, Mr Richard Ofori Agyemang Boadi, used the occasion to correct the wrong notion held by a section of the public that the government was backing the activities of the unlicensed miners.
He said there was a combined team of police and military officers protecting the concession of AGA.