Before President Akufo-Addo made his daring populist statement regarding the galamsey fight, Hon. Kennedy Agyapong vividly described Nana Akufo-Addo as like a huge tree, which does not have roots when it comes to the fight against the galamsey menace in the country.
To show that he was indeed serious about the fight against this generational suicidal illegality (galamsey), the President put his presidency on the line before his second bid in 2020.
Literally, the President meant he was ready to lose the 2020 general elections even when he vigorously fought the galamsey menace.
Not long, it turned out that his ‘presidential talk’ did not amount to anything in terms of fighting this raging ‘galamsey virus’ under his watch.
In fact, the anti-galamsey report authored by Prof. Frimpong-Boateng, former chairman of the Inter-Ministerial Committee on Illegal Mining (IMCIM) and former Minister of Environment, Science and Technology nakedly exposed the insincerity of President Akufo-Addo to fight the galamsey menace threatening the present and future generations in the country.
Nana Akufo-Addo’s ‘online’ presidency is simply attacked and put easily offline by the ‘galamsey virus’ enabled by the ‘Presidential Galamseyers’ and other operators in the sector. This clearly demonstrates that Nana Akufo-Addo made such a populist statement just to win his second bid.
The analogy made by Kennedy Agyapong in respect of Akufo-Addo’s efforts to fighting the galamsey menace to a ‘huge rootless tree’ is now making sense to me. Here is more to my assertion.
When Nana Akufo-Addo put his presidency on the line and affirmed that he would not ‘go along’ with those engaging in the raging galamsey operations, we all thought he was genuine and serious about fighting this worsening menace.
Like pregnancy, Nana Akufo-Addo’s pretense in fighting the galamsey menace was embarrassingly exposed by Prof. Frimpong-Boateng’s anti-galamsey report where he mentioned names of ‘Presidential Galamseyers’. The President did nothing since the report was submitted to him on March 19, 2019 until it was leaked this year.
Additionally, the report alleged galamsey activities, which took place near the garden of Akufo-Addo’s family residence in Kyebi as well as Akonta Mining Company, which has been mining indiscriminately in the Forest Reserves and exposed by Joy News reporter, Erastus Asare Donkor.
All major rivers serving many communities, providing various ecosystem services for local people, and protecting the rich biodiversity of both plants and animals are seriously threatened! I have also read that the Black Volta is equally badly affected by the galamsey operations happening across the length and breadth of the country.
I have a few critical rhetorical questions for Nana Akufo-Addo since his ‘online’ presidency has been badly attacked by the raging ‘galamsey virus’ under his watch:
- Mr. President, since you could not sincerely fight the galamsey menace, why did you deceive Ghanaians by putting your presidency on the line just to get votes, and yet, all water bodies are being destroyed in the country?
- Mr. President, is it not honorable for you to just pay the ultimate price of resigning from his office as you put your presidency on the line in this matter in the first place?
- Mr. President, what legacy will you leave behind amid the complete devastation of our pristine Forest Reserves and water bodies with unending galamsey activities while you look on seemingly helplessly?
- Mr. President, how would the poor be able to afford drinking water in affected mining areas if all these major rivers are polluted beyond recovery?
- Mr. President, why should this potential environmental crime or murder happen under your watch when you appeared to have put your presidency on the line to solve the galamsey menace?
To conclude, if for you anything, I urge Nana Akufo-Addo to recommit and rededicate himself to the galamsey fight. Mr. President, those ‘Presidential Galamseyers’ who are closer to your nose as mentioned by the anti-galamsey report authored by the good old Prof. Frimpong-Boateng should be revisited and handled with the urgency and seriousness it deserves.
Mr. President, if nothing is done about this galamsey menace before your last term ends, posterity will not judge you kindly at all.
As an Environmentalist and Climate Enthusiast, my heart aches for Mr. President’s slowness to genuinely act to save our plants, animals, humans, and water bodies in mining communities.
It is apparently clear that Mr. President Akufo-Addo’s bold speech on the galamsey fight by putting his presidency on the line is now proven a mere saying and he never meant to fight the galamsey menace head-on.
The author, Dr. John-Baptist Naah, is an author of researcher