A 37-page report by former Minister for Environment, Science, Technology and Innovation, Professor Kwabena Frimpong-Boateng has revealed that some New Patriotic Party (NPP) officials at Jubilee House are engaged in small-scale unlawful mining (galamsey).
According to him, these individuals prevented him from addressing the issue, as well as the committee he headed.
“I can state without any equivocation that many party officials from the national to the unit committee level had their friends, PAs, agents, relatives, financiers, or relatives engaged in illegal mining. Most of them employed Chinese workers.
“I am not referring to party people who had their legitimate concession and were mining sustainably as they were instructed to do.
“There are appointees in the Jubilee House who are engaging in or supporting illegal mining or interfering with the fight against the menace,” excerpts from the document said.
According to Professor Kwabena Frimpong-Boateng, majority of the ministers appointed to the Inter-Ministerial Committee on Illegal Mining (IMCIM) abandoned the committee.
The Ministers of Sanitation and Local Government and Rural Development were the only ministers who remained to serve on the Committee, according to Professor Kwabena Frimpong-Boateng.
President Akufo-Addo established the Committee in March 2017 to combat unlawful small-scale mining.
Environment, Science, Technology and Innovation (MESTI), Lands and Natural Resources (MLNR), Local Government and Rural Development (MLGRD), Chieftaincy & Religious Affairs, Regional Re-Organisation and Development, Monitoring and Evaluation, Water and Sanitation, Interior, Defense, and Information are some of the ministries that made up the Committee.
The Committee’s duties included regulating and sanitising small-scale mining operations in the various mining regions to ensure that miners adhere to the law.
However, the Committee was disbanded soon after the 2020 presidential election.
The report also revealed how a former NPP representative in the Ashanti Region sold concessions that had been obtained unlawfully for GHC 200,000 each.
“Hon. Joseph Albert Quarm, the former MP for Manso Nkwanta exemplifies such individuals. He was a member of parliament for the Manso Nkwanta Constituency in the Ashanti region and at the same time a member of the board of the Minerals Commission.
He used his position as a member of the Minerals Commission to acquire dozens of large scale concessions in his district, ostensibly for community mining purposes.
“This infuriated the party in the constituency, so during the 2020 primaries to select a candidate, the electorate voted against NPP MP, the then sitting MP, who had more resources than other candidates,” parts of the report said.
The report emerged after President Akufo-Addo instructed the Police to look into the earlier accusations made by Prof. Frimpong-Boateng in March.
The distinguished scholar, who served under President Akufo-Addo in his initial tenure in office, stated that corruption extends as far up as Jubilee House, where the administration is located.