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Galamsey: Operation Vanguard rounds up 50 suspects

BY: Isaac Yeboah

Fifty suspected illegal miners – 34 Ghanaians, 10 Chinese and six Nigerians, were between Saturday and Monday rounded up from various illegal gold mining sites by the joint security taskforce, Operation Vanguard.

The arrests, according to Operation Vanguard, followed several operations it conducted and has since handed over the suspects to various authorized bodies.

The operations were conducted in the Ashanti, Eastern, Central, Western and Western North regions and aimed at halting illegal mining activities.

In an update of its latest patrols, Operation Vanguard said patrols conducted within the Adansi, Amansie West and Amansie Central districts in the Ashanti Region resulted in the arrest of a local and 4 Chinese Nationals suspected of mining illegally.

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“Other patrols conducted in the Amenfi District in the Western Region also resulted in the arrest of 6 other suspected Chinese illegal miners.”

It said 4 excavators, 3 assorted vehicles and 3 pump action rifles were seized in addition to a total of 119 changfans that were destroyed or immobilized at various illegal mining sites.

The foreign suspects and excavators have since been handed over to the Inter-Ministerial Committee on illegal Mining (IMCIM).

Operation Vanguard said in another operation conducted by its personnel from their Forward Operating Base in the Eastern Region, 39 suspected illegal miners were apprehended in the Atiwa West District.

The suspected illegal miners, 33 Ghanaians are currently in the custody of the Anyinam, Osino and Kwabeng District Police pending processing, with the 6 Nigeriens in the custody of IMCIM.

Here again three minelab gold detecting machines were also seized from the miners.

The arrests, which were made in two separate locations within the general area of Sankubenase was based on a tip-off.

“Operation VANGUARD is still admonishing the general public to be forthcoming with any information that can assist the taskforce in curtailing activities of illegal miners.”