The Board Chairman of the Minerals Commission, Mr S.K. Boafo, has called for improved local involvement in the mining and extractive industry to drive the social and economic transformation of the country.
He noted that after a century of gold mining, the country had little to show by way of development, particularly in the resource-rich areas where the mineral was being exploited.
“As a country with a commanding lead in gold production on the African continent, Ghana does not have the wealth reflecting in its development,” he stated.
Mr Boafo said the current state of some mining communities and regions, characterised by poor infrastructure, poor physical development and poverty, was not the best.
Tour of mining sites
Speaking after a tour of some mining sites of Adamus Resources and its host communities in the Western Region, Mr Boafo said “on record we have taken over countries in Africa, including South Africa, and are the seventh in the world in gold production.
It is time for us to redefine the country’s position and benefits, as well as adopt proper industry practices”.
Mr Boafo appealed to Ghanaians, both home and abroad, who had the resources to take up large-scale mining and contribute to the physical development of mining communities to befit the status of the resource being extracted.
He further encouraged mining companies in the country to list on the Ghana Stock Exchange to ensure inclusion of Ghanaian ownership.
Mining companies, he observed, were facing challenges as a result of the withdrawal of soldiers from their concessions as that had caused the invasion by intruders who entered the concessions to steal.
The issue was before Cabinet, he said, adding that the outcome would be made known.
Support for communities
Mr Boafo commended Adamus Resources, now a Ghanaian-owned company, for their operations in the area and support for the communities.
The acting General Manager of Adamus Resources, Mr Ibrahim Halilu Mohammed, said since 2009, the company had contributed more than $104 million in taxes and other levies to the national economy.
Aside from that, he said the company had also invested heavily in social investment programmes in the areas of health, skills development and education, among others.
In line with best practices and sustainability, he said, the company had also improved amenities in communities it operated in, as well as provided crop compensation and set up a development fund.