I will put my Presidency on line to stop galamsey – President

By Ken
Sackey, GNA

Accra, July 10, GNA – President Nana Addo
Dankwa Akufo-Addo on Monday said he was prepared to put his presidency on the
line in his quest to end the scourge of illegal mining to safeguard Ghana’s

He said he was not worried whose ox was gored
in the fight against illegal mining or galamsey, because he had the duty as the
leader of the country to ensure the survival of the country as an entity.

“But it has been said that I should be careful
because many of these people voted for me and if I continue this exercise, they
would not vote for me.

“We have a duty to protect it for those who
would come after us and if our river bodies are drying up, our landscape is
being desecrated. We have a responsibility to say no, we can’t allow this to go
on for our own common survival and that of those to come.

“If we allow that to continue, we are
jeopardising our own future,” he said when addressing traditional leaders at a
two-day workshop to sensitise them on the dangers of galamsey and the need to
end that activity.

The President said though the country had
passed through difficult times, and many people have had to find means of
making ends meet for themselves and their families, that should not be the
reason for some citizens to engage in activities that could spell doom for the

He said it was unacceptable that Ghana’s
rivers and forest that “have been with us for centuries” should dry up and be
devastated because people had to survive.

“And all kinds of people from all walks of our
national life are engaged in this exercise – security personnel, political
leaders, businessmen, and nananom, some chiefs are all involved in this.

“I cannot oversee that because it would be a
betrayal of the trust that the Ghanaian people put on me on January 7 this
year”, he said, urging traditional leaders not to sit back and allow the
activities of illegal miners to jeopardise the very survival of our nation.”

President Akufo-Addo pleaded with the
traditional rulers and authorities to support the fight against illegal mining,
saying, “I am very committed but my commitment is not enough, I need yours as

“With your commitment, I will leave here
knowing that, no matter how difficult and how long it takes, we will win this

“Any serious social mobilisation of Ghana
since time immemorial involved our chiefs without them nothing can happen. So
the reason why you have been brought here today is to have the opportunity to
share with you, our thoughts, our strategy, our thinking and I ask of you, in
the name of the generations yet unborn, for your support and active involvement
in bringing this menace of galamsey to an end,” he said.

“We are doing it not for ourselves, but for
those who are coming after us and I have great confidence in the Ghanaian
people and their traditional leaders. They will always stand up during critical
times…The Ghanaian people are counting on you to put your shoulders to the
wheel. Yes, those involved in this may be throwing some money around, but God
is on our side and he will provide for us,” he stated.

“This is the time for all of us to say we have
to do something now to secure our future and I have absolutely no doubt about
it that if there is any one right thing to be done in Ghana today, it is a
mobilisation to stop the phenomenon known as galamsey. It is the right thing
for us to do,” the president said.

President Akufo-Addo told the traditional
rulers that cabinet had put a committee together to design a policy, not just
to stop illegal mining, to reclaim the lands, or to make our rivers work again
but also to device means for all these able-bodied young men who are engaged in
these activities to find alternative sources of livelihood.

“It is a package that we have designed to try
and bring this menace to a conclusion. I have said it in the cabinet and
perhaps this is the first time I am making this public that I am prepared to
put my presidency on the line on this matter” he said.


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