WHY WERE SEIZED EXCAVATORS NOT KEPT WITH POLICE? – TWO GROUPS ASK GOVERNMENT

Two groups have turned to the law to criticise government in the wake of revelations that hundreds of seized excavators from illegal miners have disappeared from District Assemblies around the country.

• OccupyGhana and the Media Coalition Against Galamsey in a statement Wednesday said it was wrong that the equipment were kept the District Assemblies in the first place. 

• Minister for Environment, Science, Technology and Innovation, Professor Frimpong Boateng, disclosed on Joy FM’s Super Morning Show on Monday that the seized heavy-duty machines that were being used for illegal mining had disappeared from the premises of the assemblies where they were being kept.

• Prof Frimpong Boateng made the revelation while disputing figures attributed to former Lands and Natural Resources Minister, John-Peter Amewu, that a total of 500 excavators were seized.


MINISTER FOR ENVIRONMENT, SCIENCE, TECHNOLOGY AND INNOVATION, PROFESSOR FRIMPONG BOATENG

Two groups have turned to the law to criticise government in the wake of revelations that hundreds of seized excavators from illegal miners have disappeared from District Assemblies around the country.


OccupyGhana and the Media Coalition Against Galamsey in a statement Wednesday said it was wrong that the equipment were kept the District Assemblies in the first place. 


“…THE LAW THEN PROVIDES THAT UPON THE ARREST OF ILLEGAL MINERS, THE EQUIPMENT THEY WERE USING ‘SHALL, REGARDLESS OF THE OWNERSHIP…, BE SEIZED AND KEPT IN THE CUSTODY OF THE POLICE.’ “IT IS FOR VERY GOOD REASON THAT THE LAW DEMANDS THAT THE EQUIPMENT SHOULD BE KEPT BY THE POLICE, AND NO OTHER INSTITUTION. THE GOVERNMENT, THEREFORE, HAS TO EXPLAIN TO GHANAIANS WHY THE EQUIPMENT ALLEGEDLY SEIZED WAS KEPT WITH DISTRICT ASSEMBLIES AND NOT THE POLICE.

Minister for Environment, Science, Technology and Innovation, Professor Frimpong Boateng, disclosed on Joy FM’s Super Morning Show on Monday that the seized heavy-duty machines that were being used for illegal mining had disappeared from the premises of the assemblies where they were being kept.


Prof Frimpong Boateng made the revelation while disputing figures attributed to former Lands and Natural Resources Minister, John-Peter Amewu, that a total of 500 excavators were seized.


“That was not the case. We were told that 500 had been seized and given to the district assemblies. But later on, when we out to check, the figure was far less than that,” he said on the Super Morning Show.


Then he made the disclosure that many have criticised as disappointing: “That was the case in most of the areas so we sent people out there to talk to the district assemblies and we got Vanguard involved and most of them [excavators] had disappeared.”


Reacting to the revelations by the Minister in a statement issued on Wednesday, the Media Coalition Against Galamsey and OccupyGhana noted that the law was clear on where the excavators should be kept in the first place.


“…the law then provides that upon the arrest of illegal miners, the equipment they were using ‘shall, regardless of the ownership…, be seized and kept in the custody of the police.’


“It is for very good reason that the law demands that the equipment should be kept by the police, and no other institution. The government, therefore, has to explain to Ghanaians why the equipment allegedly seized was kept with District Assemblies and not the police.


“Was this deliberate? Was this to make it very easy for the equipment to simply ‘disappear’? Did anyone take an inventory of the seized equipment and if so where is that inventory? Which public officers were responsible for flouting the law?” the two groups demanded.





Credit to Source: Myjoyonline

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