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Hon. Samuel Abu Jinapor replies John Mahama on Akonta Mining.

Greetings, President Mahama

Having seen your Facebook post regarding the remarks made by H.E. Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, President of the Republic, during the 28th National and 16th Biennial Congress of the National Union of Catholic Diocesan Priests' Association (NUCDPA), I must say that I am appalled.

In the normal course of things, I wouldn't need to respond to anything you publish on your Facebook page. But as the Minister in charge of Lands and Natural Resources, I feel compelled to correct the record due to the blatant disinformation and political spin in the aforementioned post, as well as the attempt to malign my integrity and that of the President about this situation.

Therefore, I'll try to avoid responding to the blatant propaganda in the aforementioned piece and instead concentrate on the facts in my response. The following are the undeniable facts surrounding this matter:

Somewhere last year, while the company had applied for a mining lease over a portion of the Forest Reserve and the application had not yet been approved, Akonta Mining Ltd. was accused of conducting some mining operations in the Tano Nimiri Forest Reserve.

 I, therefore, instructed the Forestry Commission to look into the situation and make sure that the Company does not conduct mining operations in the Forest. The Forestry Commission acted quickly and cleared the forest of all alleged illegal activities.

 President Akufo-Addo was also invited as a Special Guest of Honor at the NUCDPA Congress, where he spoke about fostering State-Church cooperation.

The President responded categorically, "Akonta Mining is not engaged in any illegal mining anywhere in Ghana AS WE SPEAK," to a specific question posed by the event's chairman at the aforementioned Congress regarding Akonta Mining's illegal mining activities.

The President was discussing the current situation when he (the event's chairman)made the comment, and continued by stating that the Government, through the Ministry of Lands and Natural Resources and the Forestry Commission, had warded off all Forest Reserves in the nation and removed all illegal mining operations from them at the time he was speaking and that Government was working to ensure that the situation remained permanent with the help of the military.

As is well known, the allegations of illegal mining by Akonta Mining Ltd are being investigated by state institutions responsible for such investigations, the Ghana Police Service and the Office of the Special Prosecutor.

The President's comments have nothing to do with past or future activities of Akonta Mining and cannot, by any stretch of the imagination, be interpreted as absolving the company from any past activities or interfering with any ongoing investigations.

The Office of the Special Prosecutor also states that the Office is currently investigating activities of Akonta Mining and other companies about allegations in its Half Yearly Report dated December 31, 2022; the Criminal Investigations Division (CID) of the Police Service has subsequently written to me requesting some additional information, which I have provided.

To perform their investigations and take the appropriate actions, several state institutions are working with representatives of the Ministry of Lands and Natural Resources.

The President chose not to discuss past firm operations that are being looked into by state agencies since he was aware of these ongoing investigations. Had it not been for the specific question posed by the event's chairman, the president would not have brought up Akonta Mining at all.

 I also want to state for the record that I was under no obligation to issue the press statement on Akonta Mining that was released in response to claims that the company had engaged in activities in the Forest Reserve. The President also didn't call any representatives from Akonta Mining to "appease" them about the government's actions. 

If these assertions were made as you allege, they are incorrect and the product of people's imagination.

"Government is resolved to win the war against galamsey, no matter the cost and effort," President Akufo-Addo reaffirmed at the Congress where he addressed.

We are dedicated to accomplishing this with the highest standards of transparency, integrity, and ultimate good faith in the public interest under his renowned and remarkable leadership.

Sir, while I have the chance, allow me to state categorically that the NDC's eight-year track record in the battle against corruption is inferior in comparison to the six years of President Akufo-Addo’s administration.

President Akufo-Addo’s exceptional funding of institutions dedicated to combating corruption, the creation of the Office of the Special Prosecutor, which, as I write this, is looking into this problem, the Right to Information Act of 2019 (Act989) being passed, the speed with which claims of corruption have been investigated, and many other accomplishments are evidence of his outstanding performance in the battle against corruption.

Due to the unjust and terrible way in which you have insulted the impeccable reputation and integrity of the President of the Republic, your successor, I have regretfully stepped forward to correct these records.

Greetings, Sir

MP Samuel A. Jinapor

Lands and Natural Resources Minister


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16th Biennial Congress of the National Akonta H.E. Mahama National


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