World Bank Doles Out $50m To Fight Galamsey

The World Bank is to support Ghana with an amount of $50 million to help the fight against illegal mining also called “galamsey” in the mining communities of the country.

The current government had bemoaned the wanton degradation of the environment and water bodies by illegal miners.

To this end, the government had taken steps to end the illegal activities by setting up inter-ministerial committees to regulate the sector.

An anti-galamsey taskforce, the “Operation Vanguard”, had also been formed to arrest recalcitrant illegal miners who refuse to adhere to the ban on illegal activities.

During a courtesy call on the Western Regional Minister, Dr Kwaku Afriyie, the Country Director of the World Bank, Henry Kerali, revealed that his outfit would support the government with $50 million to help fight the menace.

The World Bank Country Director and his team are in the Western Region on a three-day official visit to assess the progress of work on World Bank funded projects.

He noted that already, the World Bank had gone on with the planning processes as regards the release of the funds.

He stated: “Hopefully, the government of Ghana would be assisted to address the environmental challenges created by the illegal practice and find innovative ways of schooling people in the business of small-scale mining”.

He continued: “This will ensure that their activities do not hamper on sustainable livelihood and derail the gains chalked up in climate change mitigation activities”.

The Western Regional Minister, Dr. Kwaku Afriyie, commended the World Bank for their developmental support to the country and region particularly in the areas of sanitation facilities and boreholes and latrines to improve the health and well-being of the people.

He noted that the Western Region could push the country beyond aid with the right focus and support since it was endowed with the many natural resources that could accelerate the country’s development.

From the premises of the Regional Coordinating Council in Sekondi, the World Bank Country Director and his team visited the offices of the Regional Lands Commission also in Sekondi.

The Country Director of the World Bank was briefed on the success chalked up by the Ghana Land Administration project and the contribution of the client services unit.

Mr Kerali was informed that, currently, land documentation had improved tremendously with most of the delays associated with registration curtailed.

The World Bank had so far supported and strengthened land administration and management systems for efficiency and transparency in land services delivery in the country.

The World Bank team later visited the Sekondi High Court where similar support in terms of accessories and general upgrading of the court had been done to expedite actions on issues regarding land litigation.

From Emmanuel Opoku, Sekondi