…after Selling C&G Aleksa Mines Concession To Chinese
Luck eluded four notorious illegal miners, who had connived with some natives of Wassa Juabo, to disregard government’s ban on illegal mining, commonly called ‘galamsey’, when they were busted last Saturday, April 14, as they were busily doing illegal mining inside the Wassa Forest Reserve gold concession.
The suspects upon arrest, openly confessed that the concession, which belonged to a large-scale Mining Company, C&G Aleksa Ltd, was sold to them by one Cecilia Gyapong of Agona Wassa family in Juabo, at a fee of GH¢40, 000, as ‘goodwill’.
The suspects, including a Chinese national and three Ghanaians, were arrested by a military patrol team, which has been providing security protection to the company in that area. They were handed over to the Bibiani police in the Western Region.
Their names were given as; Ibrahim Alhassan, Adamu Salifu, Kwame Duah and Quin Guandong, the only Chinese citizen among the locals. They also mentioned one Ahorlu Ernest and Obeng Edward, as their principal leaders, who are allegedly financing their operations.
Meanwhile, investigations have revealed that the same, Cecilia Gyapong of Agona Wassa family, led by a certain Evans Kwafo, whose real name is Evans Adomako and one George Kofi Amponsah, few weeks ago, in a deceitful manner, held a press conference in Kumasi and accused C&G Aleksa Mines of doing illegal mining. A claim, the company vehemently denied.
The suspects, have also confessed, and revealed that, as part of the agreement with Madam Cecilia Gyapong, they are expected to be paying 20 per cent of their proceeds every week to her in the course of their illegal mining business.
This paper is, however, informed since the arrests of the suspects, Madam Cecilia Gyapong, whose name was mentioned by the suspects – as having sold the concession to them, is nowhere to be found.
Efforts by the suspects and police to track her, to assist in investigation leading to criminal prosecution, have proven futile.
Her phone has been off, following the news of the arrests. The suspects, this reporter gathered, were arraigned before a Biabiani Circuit court yesterday Tuesday, April 17.
At the moment, information picked up by this paper suggest, some other individuals are scheming to also resell the same block A & B concession owned by C&G Aleksa Mines to unsuspecting illegal miners, in a similar manner.
For now, two excavators belonging to the suspects, have been seized, including some sophisticated mining equipment being used at the sites for the illegal operations.
The activities of the illegal miners, have caused grave destruction at the site, where they were arrested.
At the time of filing this report, this paper was informed there is intense pressure on managers of the Mining Company, through phone calls from some big men, pleading on behalf of the suspects, to drop the case for an out of court settlement.
It is unclear, if the company will succumb to the pressure and back down in the criminal case, considering the conduct of some of the indigenes, who have devised a dubious technique of constantly attacking the company, to make it become unpopular to the authorities.
This case also serves a test case for the Akufo-Addo government’s fight on illegal mining in the country.
When contacted, General Manager of C & G Aleksa Ltd, Donald Entsuah, has declined to comment on the issue, except to say the law should take its course.
More to come!