Deputy Minister of Information, Pius Enam Hadzide, has accused the National Democratic Congress (NDC) of phony sanctimony with regards to the issue of illegal mining activities [galamsey] in the country.
To him, the NDC’s holier-than-thou utterances on the current administration’s fight against galamsey is simply nauseating.
The opposition NDC, over the weekend, called for the removal of President Akufo Addo as Co-chair of UN SDGs advocates over his “failed” fight on illegal mining.
Communications Officer of the party, Sammy Gyamfi, challenged the Akufo-Addo-led government to account for all the excavators that have been seized in the fight against illegal mining also known as galamsey.
Addressing the media at the banks of the Twifo Praso River in the Central Region, Mr. Gyamfi said the NDC will petition the UN over President Akufo-Addo’s appointment as co-chair of the SDG Advocates following his ‘failed’ fight on illegal mining.
But Pius Hadzide, reacting to the comments on Okay FM’s Ade Akye Abia Morning Show, directed Sammy Gyamfi to abreast himself with data from relevant water agencies on the state of River Pra when the NDC was in power before pontificating on the subject matter.
“Sammy Gyamfi should go to the Ghana Water Company and Water Research so that the institution will testify to him the state of the color of the river. What is the difference between the state of the river when the NDC was leaving power and the current state of the river where they had the press conference?” he quizzed.
He insisted that “under the John Mahama-led NDC government, the color of River Pra was as red as human blood. When NDC was leaving power, all the rivers in the country were like human blood; in fact, the color of condensed milk was brighter and clearer than our rivers in the country. Our rivers were very dirty and nasty and that was the legacy they bequeath to us”.
He reminded the opposition NDC that galamsey did not start during the Akufo-Addo regime as the activity was already being highly patronized to the extent that the then Minister of Land and Natural Resources during the erstwhile Mahama government literally threw his arms up in despair.
The Deputy Information Minister recounted the duplication of licenses which created chaos in the mining sector in the NDC regime, leading to some interventions to arrest the situation implemented by the Akufo-Addo administration.
“We, therefore, set up an Inter-Ministerial Committee to fight the galamsey and ask yourself what the NDC did in their era to fight galamsey. Even though one or two things happened which could have been avoided, it does not mean that we have done nothing to fight galamsey.
“When they had the opportunity with their press conference, I was expecting them to mention the measures they put in place to fight galamsey but they did not do that and all they did was to state that Nana Addo should be removed as Co-Chair of the UN SDGs Advocates”.
“…over 4500 miners who used to be illegal miners under former President Mahama have been trained in the Tarkwa University to become legal miners without destroying water bodies and lands. What capacity building and training did they give to the illegal miners in the country? I was expecting my brother Sammy Gyamfi to mention this during his press conference. We again developed software called “galamstop” to monitor the lifespan of licenses in the mining sector and this was done in 3 years of Akufo-Addo administration but we didn’t see anything like this in 8 years of the NDC. We have trained drone pilots to monitor the various mining sites to detect those who might engage in illegal mining activities [galamsey]. What is the record of the NDC?” he rhetorically asked.