Environment minister, Prof. Kwabena Frimpong Boateng’s claim that, “People who are against mining bauxite in Atewa are the same people who are actively engaged in galamsey in Atewa”, has attracted strong disapproval from the general public.
Concerned Citizens of the Atewa Landscape (CCAL) are amongst those who are earnestly peeved by the minister’s comments and have therefore asked him to either show proof to buttress his unfortunate claims or quickly revoke and apologize to all well-meaning Ghanaians home and abroad who are calling on government to abandon any plans to turn Atewa Forest―a water tower for Ghana into mine pit.
Prof. Frimpong Boateng last Tuesday, while taking his turn at the “Meet the Press Series” in Accra, insinuated double standards on the part of groups and individuals opposing the mining of bauxite in the Atewa Forest.
According to him, some of the individuals campaigning against the mining of bauxite in the Atewa Forest and raising environmental concerns are the same people spearheading illegal mining activities in the Atewa forest.
But in a rejoinder published on July 5, 2019 CCAL stated emphatically that no member of the Concerned Citizens of the Atewa Landscape have ever indulged in galamsey and “will never do such a dastardly act to desecrate the very environment we seek to protect.”
On accusations of “Double Standard” on the part of the concerned citizens, the group bounced the ball back at the minister. Not mincing words, the group described the statement made by the Minister as unfortunate and a “travesty of justice and betrayal of the confidence, placed in public officers to secure Ghana’s natural resources.”
“We see double standards, when you betray trust of the masses in the protection of the environment the core mandate of the Ministry which you head.
“We see double standards and bad faith, particularly on the part of the CEO of the Forestry Commission, who has surprisingly back tracked and denied giving us his full support when we passed through his office on our walk to the Jubilee House to present our petition to government. What you all seem to forget is that walls have ears, and the double standards exhibited is appalling,” they said.
Find below the full rejoinder by the Concerned Citizens of Atewa Landscape
Also find attached the direct transcription of the Minister’s statement at the meet the press series.