Traditional Authorities to be involved in the issuing of mining license – Minister

File Photo: The Minister of Lands and Natural Resources, Mr Samuel Abu Jinapor in a meeting with the National House of Chiefs in Kumasi recently.

The Minister of Lands and Natural Resources Samuel Abu Jinapor says Traditional Authorities are to be involved in the issuing of mining license.

The Minister who made this known said it is not right that traditional authorities on whose land mining takes place not to be involved in the licensing regime.

This he said, has contributed to the escalation of small scale illegal mining.

Addressing members of the Eastern Regional House of Chiefs, Mr. Jinapor said Ghana is likely to be importing water if Chiefs fail to partner government to win the war against illegal mining.

Explaining why the “Operation Halt” team has to burn excavators seized at the mining site, Mr. Jinapor said operators of the excavators take off key components of the excavators upon tip off which makes it impossible for those excavators to be moved hence the resolve to burn them on site.

He said the minerals act allows the burning of such illegal mining equipment.

President of the Eastern Regional House of Chiefs, Nene Sackitey, assured the Minister of the House’s unflinching support in the fight against illegal mining.

He, however, requested the Minister to follow up on a bill before Parliament requesting it to expunge Section 63b of Act 759 to allow chiefs to be able to summon their subjects including MPs to the House of Chiefs to explain issues to them.

Nene Sackitey further requested that as a matter of urgency, a dedicated office be set up at the Lands Commission to handle concerns of Chiefs relating to land issues.

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