A total of thirty-seven excavators have been withdrawn from illegal mining sites in the Ashanti, Eastern and Western regions within the last one week by the joint taskforce on illegal mining – Operation Vanguard.
The Taskforce monitored the withdrawal of the excavators from mining sites to the urban centres and villages between Tuesday August 8 and Sunday August 13, 2017.
According to the taskforce, on some occasions, owners of the excavators voluntarily hired low bedded trucks to move their seized excavators to Police Stations.
This, according to the leadership of the taskforce was an indication that their activities have caught the attention of some small scale and illegal miners.
They have subsequently called on other small scale and illegal miners to do same in order to save Ghana’s environment from destruction.
The government’s resolve to end illegal mining was given impetus with the deployment of security men to the three regions – Ashanti, Eastern, Western – considered to be the most affected areas.
Dubbed “Operation Vanguard”, the 400 security men made up of personnel of the Ghana Armed Forces (GAF) and the Police Service have been divided into three groups to cover the Ashanti, Eastern and Western regions.
The teams have been tasked to stay at their assigned regions until all forms of illegal mining, popularly known as galamsey, have been stopped and unauthorised mining pits permanently destroyed.
To make their work very efficient, the anti-galamsey task force that was trained at the Bundase Training Camp in the Ningo Prampram District in the Greater Accra Region has been equipped and fully armed.
The task force has also been supplied with new patrol vehicles and other logistics to enable members to perform their operations with urgency and speed.