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Amewu Lambasts AngloGold For ‘‘Deceiving’’ Ghanaian Suppliers
 
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29-Mar-2018  
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Mr John Peter Amewu, the Minister of Lands and Natural Resources, has taken a swipe at AngloGold Ashanti for secretly short listing two foreign firms to supply it with materials for the re-opening of the Obuasi mine, without government’s knowledge.

The management of AngloGold conveyed a meeting in Accra on Tuesday, with the intention of offering opportunity to Ghanaian suppliers the opportunity to apply as contractors to supply it materials ahead of the re-opening of the Obuasi mine, which was closed down in 2016.

Unknown to the Ghanaian suppliers, the management of AngloGold had already advertised and shortlisted two foreign firms to perform that task.

Interestingly, it was the Lands and Natural Resource Minister, who stormed the meeting ground at Alisa Hotel, to let the cat out of the bag, upon receiving information at the eleventh hour.

Mr Amewu, who was visibly angered by the action of AngloGold, told the gathering that, the meeting was a ‘‘propaganda’’ one by the South African firm just to cover-up its diabolic plan.

‘‘This gathering is a mere propaganda gathering just to send signal to Ghanaians that AngloGold would be doing things differently, there is one way talking and another way doing the talking.

‘‘We have begun a discussion with AngloGold for the past one year, in the middle of the discussion, the Ministry has no idea of who becomes the contractor…AngloGold secretly advertised and shortlisted two foreign contractors and you have gathered here hoping to get contract…We got this information 11 pm yesterday,’’ Mr Amewu revealed.

Mr Amewu said though government was not against foreign mining firms coming to Ghana, but there must be equity in exploration of the country’s mineral resources so that, the indigenous people would also benefit from their own resources.

‘‘This government is not against foreign mining companies but all foreign companies that are working here should take note, the resources belong to Ghanaians…you don’t go to South Africa to bring the black boys there, you don’t go to Australia and send the blacks boys there…we entertain the white boys here to work with them and there must be equity,’’ he stated.

The Land and Natural Resources Minister said the Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo-led Government would do things differently and make sure Ghanaians benefit from their own resources.
Mr Amewu expressed unhappiness about AngloGold’s decision to ask for a Ghanaian equity ownership in the Obuasi Mine, instead of demanding for a foreign equity ownership.

‘‘We don’t want Ghanaian equity ownership, we should be asking for foreign equity ownership, adding; ‘‘the past days are gone and Ghanaians should be in the driving seat,’’ he said.

Mr Amewu said government wanted Ghanaian mining firms to lead the extraction of gold ore in Obuasi, instead of foreigners because the nation had mined for more than 100 years, thus, had local mining firms that were capable to undertake underground mining.

He said government would welcome an idea whereby AngloGold would build the capacity of Ghanaians to undertake underground mining, noting that, anything less than that would not be accepted.
He charged the Minerals Commission to bring the Mining Lease on the Obuasi mine by the close of the day, Tuesday, March 27.

Mr Amewu said: ‘I’m here to make sure we do things properly, today, small-scale miners are all over, illegal miners are all over… and if these people are not going to be absorbed… and those who owned it are not going to be absorbed… then, I am afraid the mining companies will not be a safe place to work in’’.

He said the issue of equity ownership must be addressed urgently so that Ghanaians take the lead in the extractive industry in fulfilment of the local content law.
 
 
 
Source: GNA
 
 

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