A fourth prosecution witness in the trial of illegal mining kingpin, En Huang, aka Aisha Huang, has told an Accra High Court that the Chinese lady destroyed his three-acre oil palm farmland at Asuogya Nwomaso near Bepotenten in the Ashanti Region through her illegal mining activities.
The witness, Albert Appiah, led in his evidence-in-chief by Yvonne Atakora Obuobisa, the Director of Public Prosecutions, however, told the court that the accused paid him GH¢24,400 for the destruction after meeting her in Kumasi over the issue.
Mr. Appiah in evidence told the court that sometime in 2016, he noticed that a number of Chinese nationals and Ghanaians were mining within Asuogya Nwomaso, near Bepotenten, and Aisha Huang later approached him in the company of one James Ogbey, his foreman, and expressed an interest in extending her mining activities to his farmland.
“To my understanding, all the mining activities of the accused person were within the concession of Nana Kwesi Prempeh, whose company is called Volta Resources. Aisha informed me that she had been granted a permit by the Chief of Akwamu, the same chief who granted Volta Resources their concession,” the witness said.
“The accused person with her Chinese and Ghanaian mining workers came to my farmland to take measurements. The accused person was personally holding the machine with which the measurements were taken. It was late in the day and as such we could not negotiate the price so I proposed we all meet at Aisha’s mining site the following day,” Mr. Appiah further indicated.
The witness said he went to his farm the following day and realised the accused person and her workers had uprooted and destroyed a section of his oil palm plantation without the sale price being agreed, a development which infuriated him and he confronted Aisha Huang’s foreman.
Mr. Appiah said he teamed with another farmer who had also not been paid for the destruction of his farm and they went to Kumasi to negotiate with Aisha Huang for the payment for their farmlands.
Mr. Appiah said he demanded for GH¢15,000 per acre of his farmland but Aisha did not accept his proposal, and they agreed on a little over GH¢8,000 per acre, and the accused paid him GH¢24,400 outright but without a receipt.
“The only water body around my farm is Nkyingo river, which is currently in a deplorable state as a result of the mining activities of the accused person and her workers,” the witness told the court.
He added that although he could not tell the exact number of workers on Aisha Huang’s mining site, he could tell they were made up of Chinese nationals and Ghanaians, and he counted about four excavators, two washing plants and other machines being used on the mining site belonging to Aisha.
BY Gibril Abdul Razak