Winneba traditional leaders urge Minerals Commission to halt mining concessions

Winneba traditional leaders urge Minerals Commission to halt mining concessions

Concerned Traditional Leaders in and Gomoa Akyempim have raised their voices against the Minerals Commission's decision to grant mining concessions in the Muni-Pomadze Ramsar Site and Yenku Forest Reserve in .

The leaders expressed their determination to resist any attempts to compromise the area's security and protection for future generations.

During a press conference in Winneba, the leaders, representing Asafo groups, Youth, Adzebaafo, Fishermen, Fishmongers, Traditional Priests, Family Heads, and other stakeholders, voiced their concerns and called on the Government to reconsider the agenda as outlined in the 2024 by the Finance Minister.

The Finance Minister announced that permission had been granted to Green Metals Resource Limited, a mining firm, to undertake large-scale mining in the Muni-Pomadze Ramsar Site and Yenku Forest Winneba, covering over 6.93 square kilometres.

Neenyi Kojo Sei II, spokesperson of Effutu, emphasized that they would not allow mining activities to commence in the area, endangering the environment, disrupting the topography, and displacing wildlife.

The leaders expressed concerns about the impact on the livelihoods of people in Gomoa Akyempim and Effutu Traditional Areas who depend on the Lagoon resources.

The leaders stressed their historical connection to the Ramsar site, which defines their identity. Neenyi Kojo Sei II stated, “We condemn and reject the said move by the government, and the permit issued to that effect must be revoked forthwith.”

Highlighting the significance of the Aboakyer Festival, the leaders noted that the area is where the two Asafo groups in Effutuman annually hunt for live deer for the festival.

They argued that the sacredness and integrity of the festival, handed down by ancestors 500 years ago, would be compromised by mining activities.

The concerned Traditional Leaders pointed out that Ghana is a signatory to the Ramsar Convention, committed to protecting Ramsar Sites identified as important wetlands.

The Muni Pomadze Ramsar Site is protected under the Wetland Management Regulations 1999, LI-1659, covering a significant part of Coastal Winneba, the Pratu, Ntakorfa stream, and the Muni Lagoon.

“We, the concerned traditional leaders in Effutu and Gomoa Akyeampem Traditional area, are saying it is a bad move by the government to give out the said area for mining. We will not sit aloof for it to happen because it is our heritage, culture, environment, and economic ties, and we need to protect it,” they declared.

Leaders at the conference included Neenyi Twerebo Onda II, Obatan Kweku Baiden, Neenyi Asaase Bonney, and Nana Kweku Aiddo Vi, representing Obrempong Krampah XI.

They collectively urged the government to withdraw the permit for the sake of peace and the well-being of the people.

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