Some irate youth have looted and vandalised properties of Geo Professional Services (GPS) Mining Company in the Amansie West District with damages running into millions of cedis.
They caused considerable damage to virtually every item on sight including electrical connections, air conditioners, food, mining machinery, stationary and even furniture with the chances of re-fixing them being a herculean task.
Member of Parliament for Amansie Adubia, Yaw Frimpong Addo, in a chat with journalists Ghana condemned the vandalism as “lawless and too grave.”
He said the motive for the attack was due to arrears in salary payments and unfulfilled extension of corporate social responsibility commitments amongst others.
Mr Addo described the act as a double jeopardy situation for the company with its expatriate staff being arrested in a recent operation led by Minister of Lands and Natural Resources, John-Peter Amewu, in a nation-wide exercise to clamp down on the activities of illegal mining activities.
He said a taskforce has been established to watch over the mine and pledged that the culprits would be arrested and punished.
Mr Addo said small-scale mining is exclusively reserved for Ghanaians and would join hands with government to use lawful means to stop the illegality festering in that sector.
Mr Amewu condemned the destruction at the mining site and called on the security agencies to investigate and bring the perpetrators to book.
He said government believes in forging genuine business partnerships on win-win benefits, taking cognizant of respect for the legal frameworks and abiding by the environmental caveats for businesses to thrive.
The Minister said government would streamline activities in the mining sector with production done in a sustainable and friendly manner.
The main partner of KAAS Mining group and a concessioner, Charles Kurankye, in an interview, debunked assertions that the company had reneged on its corporate social responsibilities and again failed to pay salaries, which is alleged to be in arrears.
He said GPS is currently operating in less than 25 of 75 acres of land allocated it and nowhere near 500 acres being alleged.
Mr Kurankye affirmed the partnership with some expatriates and the engagement of security support to increase production and protection of life and property.
GPS is a subsidiary of the KAAS Group of Companies, an international geological management and consultancy entity, which provides mining consultancy support services across the board.