Artisanal miners can heave a sigh of relief as the Minister of Land and Natural Resources, Kweku Asomah-Cheremeh, has officially inaugurated a secretariat unit for Ghana Artisanal Small-Scale Mining (ASM) Formalization Project.
The Ministry of Lands and Natural Resources supritends the Ghana Artisanal Small-Scale Mining Formalization Project.
This facility is expected to serve as the Coordinating Unit for what is now the Ministry’s flagship project; the Multi-Sectoral Mining Integrated Project (MMIP).
According to the Minister, the Ghana Artisanal Small-Scale Mining Formalization Project will ensure orderliness and environmentally sound development of artisanal small-scale mining in Ghana.
“This 5-year project, to begin in 2021, will be implemented across small-scale gold mining areas in Ghana and will aim to focus on improving efficiency in the artisanal small-scale mining sector,” Mr. Asomah-Cheremeh said.
He added that “the Ghana Artisanal Small-Scale Mining Formalization Project will ensure that the capacity and skills of the actors in the sector are developed and will promote the adaptation and use of safe, affordable and appropriate technology.”
The Minister highlighted the total registered gold production by small-scale miners which he said rose by 2.2 percent in 1989 to 28 percent of the national production in 2011 and 43.1 percent in 2018.
Despite the impressive statistics, he said, the negative impact on land, water and vegetation due to both legal and illegal small-scale mining operations, have been huge, culminating in what is now commonly referred to as galamsey.
Thus, he noted that implementing the ASM Formalization Project was key in tackling the menace of galamsey.
“The Ghana Artisanal Small-Scale Mining Formalization Project is therefore now the ongoing Ministry of Lands and Natural Resources’ approved long-term solution to the galamsey menace currently facing the country,” Mr. Asomah-Cheremeh noted.