The Kadjebi District Chief Executive, Hon Agbanyo Wilson implored the Chiefs and People of Asato to be indebted to H.E. President Nana Akufo Addo for the huge intervention and investment in the district. He said it would be mentioned in the record books that it was his term that iron ore has been found and dug. He explained that the rumors of iron ore in this area have been there for over 40 years, but through the effort of the NPP government led by President Nana Akufo Addo, these rumors have become factual through scientific surveys that put on the way for exploration.
The DCE made this known during a stakeholder’s community engagement meeting at Asato. He said the community engagement was to provide more insights into the iron ore exploration activity which was announced to begin in the area soon. To borrow Prof Frank Nyame of the University of Ghana’s words, “mining transforms societies”, he asked the chiefs and the people to prepare themselves for the future transformation in their area.
He allayed the fears of the chiefs and the people that the benefits of the project far outrank the negative effects. He has assured the people that he would not sleep on his job to allow bad things to happen to them as has been the case elsewhere.
He asserted that when the anticipated quantities of iron ore are found and exploration begins, the district assembly would not hesitate to provide the needed support to ensure that the right contractual agreements are made for the greater benefit of the people.
He thanked the African Exploration Mining Group (AEMG) and the Ghana Geological Agency (GGSA) for the arrangement for the takeoff activity among others. He, therefore, prayed to the people to provide the government and the investors their maximum support and cooperation to ensure the success of the investment.
He promised that the District Security Council (DISEC) shall ensure the security and safety of all persons, materials and equipment that would be deplored to the district, and to the various areas where they are going to carry out the exploration work.
Mr Nashiru Abdulai said they have come to engage the chiefs and the people about how to harness iron ore extraction. He emphasized that the team has come to check the quality and quantity of the iron ore in the area before investors could be invited to extract them. He appealed to chiefs and the people to give the team the necessary backing to carry out their work effectively.
Prof Frank Nyame a geology expert from the University of Ghana made it known to the people that their yet to start exploration but what they have come to do is to test the quantity and quality of the iron ore. He said the quality and quantity of the iron ore would determine whether the investors should invest in the mining of the iron ore.
Prof Frank Nyame further noted that apart from Kadjebi District, the team would visit Guan district, Buem district and Nkwanta district for the same purpose.
He assured the people that their lands would not be destroyed in vain because compensation would be paid to the affected people. He said mining does not spoil but rather mining transforms society. For this reason, the investors would take into consideration their corporate social responsibility to make sure that the area benefits immensely from the exploration God willing when it starts.
He finally asked them to take advantage of the opportunity to invest heavily in the education of their wards so they can grow to become useful citizens in the future.
On their part, the Chiefs promised to give the team the necessary support to make sure that they have successful work. They prayed to the gods to pave the way for gigantic exploration to create jobs for the teeming unemployed youth.
They asked that they should be final negotiations before the formal work begins. They said when this happens, it would take away any skepticism or uncertainty which could create problems for both parties they concluded.
They also thanked the NPP government for coming to do this huge investment in their area.
Participants appealed to the chiefs to make a better decision that would benefit the entire community but not their individual selfish preferences.
Story by:Kwaku Stephen