Some illegal mining have evaded an arrest during a swoop undertaken by the Wassa East District Mining Taskforce. The usual operation by the anti-galamsey taskforce in the district is meant to crackdown on these illegal miners along the Pra River and in the forest reserve.
In Amponsaso a village in the Wassa East District, reports indicate a rather discreet operation of these illegal and recalcitrant miners despite the full scale combat met out at them by government.
On Tuesday, October 16, 2018, the Anti-Galamsey Taskforce upon the receipt of intelligence on some illegal mining operations in the village invaded the area.
To their dismay these illegal miners, according to the team, had evaded their operational area, upon their arrival. Acres of cocoa land was lost to serious degradation by these miners.
However, their mining equipment including two excavators, were left behind.
District Command of the Ghana Police Service, Supt. Gyebi told says they had to demobilize the excavators and then combed the areas in an attempt to arrest the miners.
“We saw two excavators. One had just finished working…maybe the previous night but there was no body on site. We have been warned not to set the machines on fire. So we demobilised the functional excavator by removing the control board, and then we combed the area but we actually didn’t see anybody at the scene”, he narrated.
District Chief Executive for the area, Wilson Arthur mentioned that the matter has been on the District’s radar for quiet sometime, undergoing investigations. He disclosed that their community volunteer groups have observed the usage of fire arms by these illegal miners in the community, a situation he stressed had thrown the village into undue harassment and panic.
“If we don’t handle this carefully it might result into bloodshed. So we had to find a strategic way to get them without causing any harm”, he said.
Mr Arthur disclosed that the owner of the land [whose name was given as Adwoa Nkrumah] has been invited by the police to assist investigations.
Commenting on the challenges the assembly is experiencing in managing the menace, Mr Arthur noted that the assembly has had to sacrifice the scanty resources they are able to mobile for developmental purposes to sponsor the operations of the taskforce.
“As we speak, the access road to Asatoase is blocked. Same with Yaw Larbi, Apeasuman, so you can’t have that peace of mind. The little resources we could have used to rehabilitate their roads is what has been put into the operations of the taskforce”, he cried.