Emelia konadu Kyeremeh (inset), Leader of WIDA, addressing the forum
Emelia konadu Kyeremeh (inset), Leader of WIDA, addressing the forum

3 Communities educated on negative impacts of quarry activities

The Women Integrated Development Association (WIDA), a non-governmental organisation, has engaged three farming communities hosting quarry companies in the Wenchi Municipality in the Bono Region.


The engagement was to explore ways to minimise health risks and environmental challenges associated with the quarry industry.

The forum, which was organised by WIDA, with funding from the Global Green Grants Fund and facilitated by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), brought together about 200 key stakeholders from Buoku, Mensahkrom and Abrefakrom, all farming communities.

Organised on the theme: "Quarry mining: Impact on health, environment and livelihood and community rights", the community members were schooled on the negative impact of activities of the quarries on their health, livelihood and environment.


The forum also created an opportunity for the EPA to interact with the participants to identify some of the challenges the quarry operations had on the communities.

It also sought to assess the negative impact of quarrying activities on the environment, health and livelihood of the people, particularly women and children in the three host communities.

Additionally, it aimed at collecting data on the negative impact of the activities of the companies to enable WIDA to engage the companies to minimise the negative impact on the health, environment and livelihood of the people.

During the open forum, some of the community members raised concerns about several negative impacts of quarry activities on their livelihood, health and the environment.

Some of the issues raised included dust pollution, the development of cracks in their buildings due to blasting, and water and air pollution. 
Others were the blocking of routes leading to their farms and the destruction of farmlands and vegetation, among others.

EPA investigation 

Addressing the forum at Buoku recently, the Bono Regional Assistant Programme Officer of the EPA, Hudu Mutawakilu, said it would not hesitate to charge or punish the quarry companies if it came out that the concerns the communities raised were true after investigations.

He encouraged the community members to always report concerns associated with the activities of the companies to the EPA or the Minerals Commission to take action.

Mr Mutawakilu said the approved distance from a quarry site to a community or human activities should be 500 metres.

Engage companies

The Leader of WIDA, Emelia Konadu Kyeremeh, said her organisation would further engage the quarry companies after the forum to discuss with them their findings in order to get solutions to the concerns of the communities.

She said the engagement would help minimise the negative impact on the health of the people and the environment.

Mrs Kyeremeh said WIDA would work closely with the EPA to ensure that the challenges caused by the operations of the companies were addressed, to bring relief to members of the communities.

She said the forum created an opportunity for the communities to speak directly with the EPA and seek their support in dealing with their plight.

Mrs Kyeremeh said the forum also enabled stakeholders to educate the communities on how to channel their concerns to the appropriate authorities to demand clarification on issues associated with the quarry mining.

She said plans were far advanced to organise a series of community engagements to educate them on the quarry laws to build their capacity to enhance their knowledge.

Mrs Kyeremeh said WIDA was a women's organisation established in 2014 to promote women and community rights, women's economic empowerment and issues around environmental sustainability.

Quarry companies 

The Assemblyman of the Buoku Electoral Area, Musah Mustapha, told the Daily Graphic that there were about five quarry companies operating in the area. 


He explained that the Grey Quarry Company was operating at Abrefakrom, while J Adom Quarry was operating at Buoku.

Mr Mustapha said the activities of these quarry companies were having several negative impacts on the health, livelihoods and environment.

He expressed the hope that the collaboration between the NGO and the EPA would help reduce the environmental and health impacts of the quarry companies in the area.

Writer's email: [email protected]

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