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Prof. Kwabena Frimpong-Boateng
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The Inter-Ministerial Committee on Illegal Mining (IMCIN) set up by President Akufo-Addo has proposed the use of drones to monitor illegal mining activities in the country.

This was announced to the press on Thursday in Accra by the Minister for Environment, Science and Technology Prof. Kwabena Frimpong-Boateng.

He was presenting the roadmap on the lifting of the ban on small-scale mining nationwide which was introduced by President Akufo-Addo in February 2017 in the wake of the heightened illegal mining activities which caused severe destruction to water bodies and environment.

IMCIN assessed all mining regions during a nationwide tour and formed the District Committee on Illegal Mining (DCIM).

A total of 144 drone pilots from the Nation’s Builders Corps, Prof Boateng disclosed, were being trained for the DCIMs; 10 for the IMCIM, 18 for Operation Vanguard and 15 for the Minerals Commission.

These drones are highly advanced in their features and functions, with some having the capability of special night vision, he said.

“The special drones will be deployed at night and will allow for certain individuals, who engage in illegal mining at night, to be brought to order.

He stated that there will also be a room in Accra where special monitors that will monitor the live vision of the deployed drones at various mining areas.

The monitors will be able to have four views simultaneously.

“These are some of the drones that we have been able to acquire, one has thermal sensors that will allow us to deploy in the night because we had a situation where the team did not operate in the night because they did not have night vision equipment. We now have these drones to help us to monitor,” the minister added.

Also, a software has been created to help tackle the menace.

The software, known as GalamSTOP, would integrate data from the various stakeholder agencies such as Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), Minerals Commission, WRC and district assemblies.

The GalamSTOP software will monitor the lifecycle of mining and related licences in the small-scale mining sector.

The software will also help DCIMs with their weekly reports to IMCIM to tackle illegal mining in the districts.
Source: Daily Guide

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