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Mr. Daniel Armah Attoh   (Afrobarometer project manager )emphasized that, "for years, Ghana has struggled to address the problems of land degradation, water pollution and destruction of farmlands resulting from illegal small -scale gold and diamond mining popularly known as galamsey."After short-lived efforts under the previous government, the Nana Akufo Addo administration classified "galamsey" as a major challenge to the country and imposed a six month ban early this year.The Ministry Of Lands and Natural Resources followed with a 21-day ultimatum to all "galamseyers " to cease operations and surrender their equipment."

He continued that , The government also launched a multilateral Miming  Integrated Project (MMIP) aimed at enacting more stringent mining regulations and improving enforcement of mining laws, including the use of drones and other monitoring technology( GHANA BUSINESS NEWS, 2017 ). Around the same time, then Chief Justice Georgina Theodora Woode designated 14 courts to handle "galamsey "cases. Vice president Mahamadua Bawumia announced the suspension of  issuance of license for small-scale mining, and a number of Ghanaians and foreigners were arrested on suspicion of illegal mining by a ministerial task force (Citifmonline, 2017).
A media coalition Against Galamsey  formed to support the government's efforts (Ghana Star, 2017) and collaborated with the  public - interest group Occupy Ghana to organize a National Red Friday crusade to rally citizens (Ghana Star, 2017). It is estimated that about one 1 million people )nationals, other west Africans, and Chinese ) are involved in illegal  small -scale mining (some diamond  mining but mostly gold) in Ghana, each  earning on average between US$100 and US$ 300per month (physical org, 2017).

According to him, Afrobarometers latest national survey in Ghana  shows  that  most Ghanaians support efforts to wipe out illegal small -scale mining and approve of the government's performance on this issue. But they also overwhelmingly support the government's proposed initiatives to develop alternative livelihoods for those affected by an end to galamsey.

"in conclusion he said , "Afrobarometer is a PAN-AFRICAN, non-partisan research network that conducts public attitude surveys on democracy, governance, economic conditions, and related issues across more than 35 countries in Africa. Six round of surveys were conducted between 1999 and 2015."

Source:Kofi Dwumah /

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