The District Chief Executive of Ellembelle, Kwasi Bonzoh has directed all artisanal illegal small-scale miners operating on the concession of Adamus Resources Limited, to immediately stop such activities.
Kwasi Bonzoh gave the directive after a meeting with the Parliamentary Select Committee on Mines and Energy, Adamus, and the Chiefs from the area following recent tensions between the mine operator and youth in the district resulting in loss of lives and injuries.
The DCE justifying the directive said it is to pave the way for the finalization of processes for Adamus to cede off part of its concession for community mining.
“Currently the chiefs have requested for the Adamus pit where currently the galamsey operations are going on to be ceded off. So we are going to make an application for that particular location, and then we will continue to push with the process. In fact, the process didn’t start today. It started back on the 12th of January 2022 when the CEO of Adamus was invited by the District Security Council, and she said the company was committed to releasing the land. What had been the bottleneck is the inability of the communities involved to agree on a common location.”
”Now that they have agreed, I think we’ve crossed that line, so the process will continue very soon. We believe that Ellembelle is going to have a community mining site where all these unemployed youth who are doing galamsey and causing all these sorts of problems can work. But before that process comes to finality, we are asking the people involved in galamsey to stop their galamsey activities, because that is criminal”, he said.
Kwasi Bonzoh added that a continuous galamsey before the finality of the processes can trigger reactions from Adamus in the protection of its concession.
“Once galamsey goes on, the mining company has to protect its concession and that is where the problem comes from because they will go there, and the company will go and arrest them, and they will go before the court and that create the disturbances which disturb all of us”, he noted.
Meanwhile, the Managing Director of Adamus Mines, Patrick Von Kpekpena after the meeting with the Parliamentary Select Committee on Mines and Energy, the DCE and Chiefs told Citi News they are ready to work with the Minerals Commission to release some of the company’s concession for the small scale miners.
“Yes, we are considering that. We have had several meetings with DISEC on that and even today’s meeting with the Parliamentary Select Committee on Mines and Energy, the DCE, and Chiefs, we touched on community mining and the steps that we must follow to be able to arrive at that kind of decision.”
”It is a process, and it is not just within the control of Adamus. We will wait for an application from the communities to the Ministry of Lands and Natural Resources, and from there they will engage us to be able to move the process forward. I don’t have the timelines as to how quickly we can mature it, but we are committed to the processes”, he said.
The MP for Ellembelle, Emmanuel Armarh Kofi-Buah who is also a member of the Parliamentary Select Committee on Mines and Energy that met with Adamus Resources Limited while welcoming the proposal to cede off to the communities called for a thorough investigation and an end to the unfortunate killing of young persons under such circumstances.
“This painful death of young people should not happen again. There has to be a thorough investigation to make sure we understand what happened. The people at fault will take responsibility and the law will take its course. That investigation must be transparent and must be conclusive. Justice must be done because every life is important. But more importantly, we also have to look at the way forward, and that is to make sure that we don’t see this revolving violence as if this is a war zone.”
”We cannot have that. There has to be peace. Adamus as a company must operate in peace and must have very good community relations, but it can only happen when we are addressing the very critical needs of these communities“, he said.
Ellembelle District is one of the fourteen districts in the Western Region of Ghana. Originally it was formerly part of the then-larger Nzema East District in 1988, which was created from the former Nzema.
The Ellembelle District Assembly exists to ensure the total development of the District through effective management of resources in collaboration with Ministries, Department, Agencies, and Non-Governmental Organizations in order to improve the quality of life of the people in the District.