The Executive Director and Head of Public Relations at Soon Mining Company, Ms. Linna Chi, has told the media in the Kwahu South district that their company has all the requisite approvals and support of local leaders including the Member of Parliament for Mpraeso Constituency, Hon. Seth Acheampong to mine in the area.
The youth in the Praso area of the district revolted against the decision of the company to mine in the area. And have vowed to resist the activities of “galamsey” due to its dire effect on the environment and the inhabitants.
Speaking in an interview, Ms. Chi, who described the action of the youth as unfortunate, believes they are being encouraged by some chiefs in the area who do not approve of the mining activities.
She stressed that “the land belongs to the Government of Ghana, and for the youth to prevent us (Soon Mining) after going through several months of approval is most unfortunate”. The furious Lina Chi added “we had the blessing of all those that matter…..We have met with the MP [Mpraeso] who supported us even in seeking the license because of the development we want to bring to Praso and its surroundings”. She noted that the company has approval from the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)
Ms. Chi expressed surprise at the turn of events and have pleaded with the people to allow them to mine as this would bring development to the Praso area.
There is brewing tension in the area, as some youth along the Pra River, have destroyed excavators and vehicles belonging to Soon Mining Company. The youth believe the action by the mining firm will not only ruin their land but also pollute their only source of water.
In January 2017, the Government of Ghana placed a ban on small-scale mining following widespread pollution of water bodies.