When President Akufo-Addo took office, some media houses in Ghana started a campaign to end illegal mining which is popularly referred to as galamsey.
The government formed an Inter-Ministerial Committee on Illegal Mining (IMCIM) to help fight the menace.
A presidential staffer Charles Cromwell Bissue was appointed as the Secretary to the IMCIM.
In a galamsey exposé released on Wednesday (February 27, 2019) by Ghanaian investigative journalist, Anas Aremeyaw Anas, Charles Cromwell Bissue has been fingered as one of the many corrupt people who is not helping the fight against galamsey.
In the latest undercover video Bissue emerges as a facilitator for a company seeking to circumvent laid down processes to be given clearance for its mining operations.
He is seen receiving money to ensure the speedy ‘clearance’ of a mining company in order that it can begin mining as soon as possible. He is heard in the video instructing his subordinates over the phone to “fast track” the processing of the company’s documents.
In the video, many more people connected to the work of the IMCIM, otherwise known as the Presidential Committee on Environment and Natural Resources, are seen in the video facilitating the payment of negotiated fees.
The Inter-Ministerial Committee on Illegal Mining, comprises the ministries of Environment, Science, Technology and Innovation (MESTI); Lands and Natural Resources (MLNR); Local Government and Rural Development (MLGRD); Chieftaincy & Religious Affairs; Regional Re-Organisation and Development; Water and Sanitation; Interior; Defence; and Information.
The committee was commissioned in March 2017 by President Akufo-Addo to sanitise the mining sector and also develop a roadmap towards lifting an indefinite ban on small scale mining that lasted for about 21 months.
The committee is chaired by Prof Kwabena Frimpong Boateng, Minister for Environment, Science, Technology, and Innovation.
To support the committee, the president also inaugurated a joint security taskforce (Operation Vanguard) that patrolled mining areas in the country to enforce the ban, seize or destroy mining equipment of those who flouted the ban, as well as arrest offenders for prosecution.
Many welcomed these measures put in place by the government to fight galamsey.
However, the latest revelations in Part One of Anas’ Galamsey Fraud, makes it look like the government has more on its hands to do to achieve that national objective.