A bombshell report authored by former Minister for Environment, Science, Technology, and Innovation, Professor Kwabena Frimpong-Boateng, has found itself in the public domain with many revelations. A signed 37-page report by Professor Frimpong-Boateng disclosed that, illegal mining popularly known as Galamsey was ongoing a few meters away from the house of Akufo Addo in Kyebi. “The impunity in the Eastern Region is exemplified by near unbelievable activity in Kyebi. I had a telephone call from Mr. Eric Antwi of the Office of the President and he narrated that the youth organizer of the NPP in Kyebi was excavating for Gold in a field close to the house of H.E. the President of the Republic. When we checked it was true that there was a Galamsey ongoing a few meters away from the house of Akufo Addo in Kyebi”, the report said. He added that “Indeed part of the garden of the President Akufo Addo had been affected. We quickly dispatched a bulldozer and an excavator to the area to reclaim the land and vegetate it. I need not say that nothing happened to the local youth organizer who caused the damage”. The report also indicted several New Patriotic Party officials at the Jubilee House accused of being actively involved in illegal small-scale mining popularly known as galamsey. “Throughout our struggle with illegalities in the small-scale mining sector, what baffled me was the total disregard of the President’s commitment to protect the environment. 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 engaged Chinese working for them. 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 that are doing or supporting illegal mining or interfering with the fight against the menace.” The report added that an NPP MP in the Ashanti Region used his position as a member of the Minerals Commission to acquire several dozens of large-scale concessions in his district, ostensibly for community mining purposes. According to the report, he ended up selling these concessions to private individuals, including party members for two hundred thousand Cedis per concession. “This infuriated the party in the constituency so during the 2020 primaries to select a candidate the electorate voted against the sitting MP, who was more resourced than other candidates. Although there were allegations that he “camped” delegates and attempted to bribe them, he lost to a lesser known individual who did not have any financial muscle.” Prof. Frimpong-Boateng in the report also cited instances when leading NPP officials served as legal counsels for persons accused of involving in galamsey and destroying the environment and water bodies. The former Minister for Environment said he put together the report dated March 19, 2021, following an order from the Chief of Staff. He, in the report, also accused a reporter of engaging in unlawful excavator sales and money laundering at the behest of some government appointees.
Prof. Frimpong Boateng kicked out
Prof. Frimpong-Boateng, the then Chairman of the Inter-Ministerial Committee on Illegal Mining (IMCIM) constituted by President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo in 2017 to lead the fight against galamsey in the country was sacked from his role in March 2020. Details on why he was sacked were not made public. He was kicked out at a time some excavators seized during the galamsey fight went missing.
Some NPP bigwigs orchestrated my ousting
Former Minister for Science and Technology, Professor Kwabena Frimpong Boateng subsequently disclosed that his exit from the Science and Technology Ministry was a grand scheme orchestrated by the government and the New Patriotic Party. Prof. Boateng intimated that the allegations of some 500 missing excavators seized from persons engaged in illegal mining activities in 2020 were untrue and made up stories by some persons in government to tarnish his reputation in order to chase him out of office. He disclosed that there were people in government that wanted him out because of his stance on illegal mining activities in the country. Prof. Boateng disclosed that the very beginning and actions of military personnel deployed to effect the arrest of illegal miners triggered the entire falsehood about him being responsible for the missing excavators at the time. “The true story is that at the start of Operation Vanguard, the soldiers were supposed to arrest the excavators, but they will go into the forest and removed the control boards of the excavators and come back to report but when they went away, the owners will come with different control boards and move the excavators away. “So the soldiers reported that they had immobilized over 700 excavators, and so we appointed someone to go round and check but when we went round, we found only about 150 to 200 excavators, the rest had been moved away.” He further stressed that “there was an orchestration within the party and the government to get me out and when I left galamsey activities increased. Now things are coming up, and we know those who are doing galamsey even within the party and even people at the Jubilee House.” Editor's Note: The Environment Report, publishers of Ghenvironment.com will be serialising the report in our subsequent editions.