Government has charged the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) to take the lead in the country’s efforts to address the problem of illegal mining popularly known as ‘galamsey.’
The Senior Minister, Dr. Yaw Osafo Maafo who made the call explained that the council could come up with cost-effective methods of reclaiming lands destroyed as a result of illegal mining.
He said the Council and other science and technology-based institution’s intervention would help government win the fight against the menace which is having dire consequences on communities in the country.
It is estimated that it will cost the nation some GH¢225,000) to reclaim each hectare of land destroyed by illegal mining or ‘galamsey’ activities across the country.
Speaking at the 60th Anniversary celebration of the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) in Accra, Yaw Osafo Maafo said scientists should lead the way in finding lasting solutions to the ‘galamsey’ threat.
“The research will be of immense help to us. It offers new opportunities for Ghana to redirect her investment in those communities to create better sustainable opportunities for our teeming youth to have the best mix of reclamation responses to make those destroyed communities bounce back to life and become new economic growth poles for our national development agenda.”
“We’ll count on CSIR and other scientific and technological institutions to lead in the search for a permanent solution to this self-inflicted menace challenging our human dignity and undermining our existence in this country,” he said.
The Minister further stressed that although such a process is capital intensive and could strain the government’s budgets, he said it is important that the country pursues it and does it well.
“It cost money to reclaim the land. Even though such estimates are costly and have devastating effect on our annual budgetary location, we need to do it and do it right.”