Okyeman Anti-Galamsey Fighter Dies

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A royal from the Akyem Abuakwa State, who began what has become a fight for almost every Ghanaian against illegal mining popularly known as “galamsey”, has died at the age of 49.

He will be buried on Saturday, May 6, 2017, after a burial service at the forecourt of the State House, Accra.

Nana Kwame Adjei Boateng, who was a friend to The Herald, died in March at the Police Hospital in Accra after a short illness.

He was once banished in a sensational manner by the Akyem Abuakwa Traditional authorities.

The royal, died while fighting the Paramount Chief of Akyem Abuakwa Traditional Area, Osagyefo Amoatia Ofori Panyin, over this same galamsey menace at a court in Accra.

He had accused Osagyefo Amoatia Ofori Panyin of endorsing illegal mining which has rendered the entire community, including the Okyenhene’s backyard, deplorable.

It is unclear if the Akyem Abuakwa Traditional Area, will be represented at the funeral.

The deceased, was banished from the Akyem Abuakwa State, together with two others, Elvis Boakye Yiadom and Akwasi Amofa in May 22, 2012.

But Odehye Boateng according to a Ghanaian Times publication, described his banishment as a joke, saying he provided evidence to all the allegations he made to prove his case.

He went to court and had the decision of the Akyem Abuakwa Traditional overturned. He stuck to his guns, unwavering to any pressure until his untimely death on March 26, 2017.

According to sources close to the family, Odehye, had complained about chest pains few weeks earlier, following which he was rushed to the hospital for treatment.

This paper was informed that he recovered well but later in March; he suffered the same condition but died at the Police Hospital.

The affable soft-spoken Cuban-trained Odehye Boateng was survived by a wife and two children.

He, in 2014 visited the offices of this paper with documents claiming he had a case against his cousin, the Okyenhene. Following a careful study of these documents and his narration, a story was published in May 5, 2014.

The Stool did not take the story lightly and dragged both Odehye and The Herald to court. The case has since been in court since 2014. He constantly visited the offices of this paper, promising to fight the case till the end, but he unfortunately died leaving the case hanging in court.

Interestingly, the Okyenhene has since summoned his chiefs forming the Akyem Abuakwa Traditional Council, over the galamsey menace which has destroyed the major water bodies in the Akyem Abuakwa Traditional Area. They met on Thursday, March 30, 2017.

According to media reports, he was to issue an ultimatum to his sub-chief to flush out all illegal miners from the area as the menace has reached an alarming rate.

Rivers and water bodies like Supong, Densu and Brim are heavily polluted with poisonous substances and made undrinkable.

A 7.9 million-Euro Water Treatment Plant at Kyebi by the John Mahama government; have had to shut down because of the level of pollution and the amount of chemical that was needed to treat the water for safe drinking is high.

Odehye Boateng believed something must be done and so even though he was left alone to fight the case, he was prepared to go the full hog.

He sounded the warning but was abandoned by many including his own family members. Perhaps if he had the support same way everyone is joining in the Galamsey fight, Ghana would not have gotten to a looming water crisis, degraded environment, destroyed public buildings and unmotorable roads among others.

The Herald, wishes the entire family, our deepest condolences. May his soul rest him perfect peace.

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