-Obuasi Artisans Small Scale Miners Association Tells AGA
By Martin Osei Tutu
The Leadership of Obuasi Artisans Small Scale Miners is asking the AngloGold Ashanti (AGA) to give back their consertion or face the wrath from them.
According to them, a negotiation was initiated some years back when the then Municipal chief executive for Obuasi Mr. John Alexander Ackon who is now the current Ashanti regional minister witnessed the negotiation when the company offered them a site for them to mine.
With a surprise from the new administration of AGA to terminate the contract, the leadership of the Obuasi Artisans Small Scale Miners who do not understand why there is a sudden change of agreement to sack them from where they were given to mine as a source of livelihood.
Speaking to the press in the office, the chairman of the association Mr. Kofi Adam said, an area called Quarry Snake was given to them as a compensation for guarding and protecting the site which belongs to AGA and was able to arrest some illegal miners (galamesay operators) who were hindering the activities of AGA.
He further disclosed that, not a penny was offered to them as reward for job done but an agreement was initiated at that time when the current minister for Ashanti region was present and witnessed every transaction that took place.
Mr. Kofi Adams also argued that it is never true that Sixty percent of the AGA concertion has been given to government but where they are claiming does not contain any mineral resources which can benefit the government and the state at large.
The remaining forty percent the AGA claimed as their concertion contains more minerals and that they found it as a cheat on behalf of the government and therefore calling on the government to launch an investigation into the negotiation of the sixty percent given to the state.
The chairman of the Small Scale Miners in Obuasi explained that the reason why they were offered the concertion was that the security of AGA was not effective so they asked them to support their security men including the police to drive away those people who were invading on their land and that is why they were able to have the said site they the Small Scale miners are operating now.
̋We have borrowed huge sums of loans to invest into our activities and that it would be worrisome if AGA is now turning against us after helping them to pursue their agenda that was a burden to them and the police˝.
He substantiated the allegation that those operating at the site now are foreigners, however they are all born and bred in Obuasi and therefore all of them are eligible Ghanaians.
We are by this calling on the government to intervene and ensure that their site is given back to them or they will advise themselves since they cannot take the law into their own hands.