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07 August 2017

More than 80 arrested in one week of Operation Vanguard clamp down

The national anti-galamsey taskforce, Operation Vanguard, says it has arrested more than 80 suspects in the massive clamp down on the menace.

Commander of the taskforce, Colonel William Agyapong told Joy FM Super Morning Show Monday, initial screening shows they are all Ghanaians.

He said the suspects were arrested at mining sites in two regions, Western and Ashanti.

The arrests come one week since the government dispatched a military solution of 400 soldiers and police officers as the clamp down on illegal mining escalates.

The taskforce also seized 25 floating machines used to mine in water bodies.

Despite a reports that 500 excavators have been seized by the government earlier in the year, the national taskforce still found excavators in some mining areas.

The arrests and seizures come even after earlier waves of arrests and seizures embarked on by district and municipal taskforces since the government declared war on illegal mining.

Telling his own story of ‘wanton degradation’, the Colonel testified that those arrested included persons from other regions who had left home to make a living at an expensive cost to the environment.

“They don’t care about the water bodies,” he lamented.

The clamp down, however, turned deadly last Sunday after the soldiers shot one suspected illegal miner after encountering stone-throwing suspects.

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