Former Deputy Minister for Energy, John Jinapor has admonished President Akufo-Addo to demonstrate some level of honesty and truthfulness in his fight against illegal small scale mining, popularly referred to as galamsey.
According to him, the issue of the missing excavators which cannot be accounted for is a sign of complete failure on the part of the President for a fight on which he put his presidency on the line.
Speaking on Newsfile on Saturday, the Yapei Kusawgu Member of Parliament indicated that in order for the government to get back on track in the fight against galamsey, President Akufo-Addo needs to show commitment by appointing the ‘right people’ to lead the fight as well as hold them responsible for any action which negatively impacts the fight.
“First of all, the President must demonstrate commitment by appointing the right people, holding them responsible, setting KPI’s for them, giving them timelines, giving them specific targets to for them to achieve, being honest and truthful to the people of Ghana, that is what will solve the problem
“The commitment against galamsey is not achieved through loquacious flowery languages and speeches. It is achieved with commitment and surrounding yourself with the right people on the job and if those people are not delivering, you have a duty as a President to fire them,” John Jinapor said on Joy FM’s newsfile on Saturday.
He criticized government for not being consistent with initial efforts aimed at dealing with the galamsey menace.
“The Minister of Lands, Asomah Kyeremeh, scored the government 85% success in December 2019, today the Minister responsible for Environment is scoring the government 70% from 85. In the same government, one minister scores them 85 and another Minister, two months down the lane, scores government 70% and this is consistent with the NPP. They like bundling figures and percentages and throwing them out so what is the basis for that 70% achievement? These figures our Ministers keep throwing about, I think they should stop that,” Mr Jinapor insisted.
According to him, some key issues such as the police exoneration of Mr Charles Bissue, the former Secretary to the Inter-Ministerial Committee on Illegal Mining (IMCIM) who was implicated in a documentary by investigative journalist, Anas Aremeyaw Anas for allegedly facilitating clearance for illegal mining operations is enough to suggest the NPP administration is not committed to the fight against galamsey.
He adds that the deportation of Chinese ‘galamsey queen’ Aisha Huang, also shows how complicit the administration has grown in its fight against the environmental menace.
The anti-galamsey task force, Operation Vanguard, this week confirmed the arrest of two NPP and three NDC members who they say were involved in illegal mining activities at Akwatia in the Eastern Region.
The move has received applause from a section of the public but speaking to the issue on Saturday, John Jinapor said the ‘so-called’ arrest is just a diversionary tactic to make the galamsey problem look as though it includes more than one political party.
“You talked about those 5 people who have been arrested, that is most unfortunate and it’s nothing but a red herring…It’s nothing but a deliberate attempt to muddy the waters and create that impression that it’s a political problem,” he added.