The District Chief Executive (DCE) for Sefwi Bibiani-Ahwiaso-Bekwai in the Western Region, Mr Jacob Ware, is spearheading the efforts of the Anti-Galamsey Committee to reclaim lands destroyed by illegal miners.
He has, therefore, ordered illegal miners (galamsey operators) in the Sefwi Awaso area to refill pits and remove all equipment from the sites with immediate effect or face the full rigour of the law.
He said the activities of the galamsey operators were seriously retarding the growth and development of the area because of water pollution and destruction of farmlands for gold prospecting.
Mr Ware gave the order at a community durbar held at Awaso to address the negative effects of galamsey operations in the area.
He said the lands could be used for productive ventures which could improve the living standards of the people, for community and national transformation.
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The DCE commended the youth of Awaso for not taking the law into their own hands to confront the operators, but organised the durbar to brainstorm on the issue and find amicable solution to it, and pledged that his administration would make every effort to stop the menace and develop the area for posterity.
The Chairman of the Awaso Anti-Galamsey Committee, Mr Richard Aidoo, urged the people to support the committee in their efforts to preserve the lands for the growth and development of the area.
“It is imperative for all the people of Sefwi Awaso to support the community leaders in their efforts to save the lands from the harmful effects of galamsey operations in the area, so that future generations will not blame us for lack of foresight,” he said.
Mr Aidoo, who is also the Director of RHIGA Construction Ltd, on behalf of the community members, thanked the DCE for his swift response to address the concerns of the people, and hoped the intervention marked the beginning of greater things to come their way.
Other opinion leaders of the area who addressed the gathering included Messrs Kwame Debrah and George Ampong.
The Akwamuhene of the Sefwi Ahwiaso traditional area, Nana Yaw Gyaim III, who chaired the function, gave his blessings to the efforts of the youth, committee, DCE and all stakeholders in the matter to bring sanity, peace and development to the area.