The Abuakwa South New Patriotic Party (NPP) has refuted claims made by Professor Kwabena Frimpong-Boateng that illegal mining (galamsey) occurs just a few meters from President Akufo-Addo’s home in Akim Kibi in the Eastern Region.
A statement available to Angelonline.com.gh released Monday, April 24, 2023, and co-signed by the Communication Officer and Constituency Secretary of the Abuakwa South NPP, Felix Nyarko Acheampong and Julius Okyere, said the executives noted with grave concern the claims made by the former minister.
Professor Kwabena Frimpong-Boateng, a former Minister of Environment, Science, Technology and Innovation, who once chaired the government’s Inter-Ministerial Committee on Illegal Mining (IMCIM), in his 37 pages report to the chief of staff on the fight against illegal mineral exploitation said a party youth organizer had a concession closer to the president’s house in Kibi.
The Youth Organizer in question, according to the document, is engaged in illegal mining in an area close to the President’s house, thereby affecting parts of the First Gentleman’s garden, a phenomenon he said was on the blind side of the President.
However, the executives expressing their grave concern about the claims in the statement stated categorically that the publication by Professor Frimpong Boateng is “falsehood” and only sought to dent the ruling government’s name.
“The executives wish to unequivocally state, that this does not only form part of that suspicious grand scheme by Professor Boateng, to use the state’s power to settle personal scores, probably, to punish the President for not reappointing him Minister of State in his second term, but also, smacks of a grand agenda to give our opponents undeserving arsenals to throw back at us in the run-up to the 2024 elections.
In the first place, to state that “the Youth Organizer of the NPP in Kyebi” is involved in any kind of illegality, is only vague, as such allegation falls short of indicating what level of the party structure the said Youth Organizer occupied at the time of the supposed incident. Was he/she a Polling Station, Constituency, Regional or National Youth Organizer? There is nothing like a local Youth Organizer anywhere in the NPP Constitution.
Indeed, if his reference to Kyebi is meant to indicate that the supposed wrongdoing is attributable to a certain Constituency Youth Organizer, then the Constituency executives wish to emphatically state, that the then Constituency Youth Organizer has never been associated whatsoever, with galamsey operation; hence, rendering this allegation short of substance,” the statement contains.
Setting the record straight, the statement noted that the very location of the President’s Kyebi residence makes it impossible for any illegal mining operation to take place even close to it except for those who do not know the house like Professor Frimpong Boateng, apparently.
It emphasised that the President’s house is not “obscured as it is closely surrounded by many other houses” and for that matter to “suggest that an illegal mining operation has taken place near the walled house to the extent that it affected parts of a supposed garden in the house, only lives much to be desired about what method at all was used for such operation.
To this end, the NPP Abuakwa South disclosed that the President does not even have a garden at his Kyebi residence therefore, for the Professor to state that a section of his garden was affected “is nothing but palpable falsehood.”
According to them the Learned Professor would have perhaps, been forgiven if he had only maintained that such report got to him through a phone call placed to him by one Eric Antwi of the office of the President.
“But to have continued to say that he personally followed up to see with his very eyes, the supposed incident, simply casts a huge slur on the integrity of both the Former Minister and his work as Chairman of the Inter-Ministerial Committee,” it stressed.
The Abuakwa Soth NPP executives used the medium and entreated well-meaning Ghanaians to disregard the accusations and called on the media to go to the president’s residence in Kyebi to fact-check Professor Frimpong-Boateng’s claims.