Accra, Oct. 4, GNA – The Minerals Commission Tuesday affirmed that the Akonta Mining Limited, a mining firm owned by Mr Bernard Antwi-Boasiako, popularly known as Chairman Wontumi, has neither a mining lease nor mineral right and permit to undertake any mining operations in the Tano Nimiri Forest Reserve.
A statement issued by the Corporate Affairs Department of the Minerals Commission and copied to the Ghana News Agency in Accra said the company’s application, dated August 25, 2022, for a lease to mine within the Tano Nimiri Forest Reserve was still pending.
It said the Minister of Lands and Natural Resources had the mandate to grant the mining lease or refuse it.
The Commission, therefore, assured the public that it was taking the necessary steps to enforce the Minister’s directive, issued on Friday, September 30, 2022, prohibiting the Akonta Mining Limited from mining in the Tano Nimiri Forest Reserve in the Western Region.
“Following the Ministry of Lands and Natural Resources Press Release on 30th September, 2022, on the alleged operations of Akonta Mining Limited in the Tano Nimiri Forest Reserve, the attention of the Minerals Commission has been drawn to a Mining Lease in circulation, purporting to be a lease granted to the company to undertake mining operations in the said Tano Nimiri Forest Reserve,” it said.
“While Akonta Mining Ltd has a mining lease to undertake mining operations in some parts of Samreboi, outside the Forest Reserve, the company has no mineral right to undertake any mining operations in the Tano Nimiri Forest Reserve.”
The Commission said the company had two mining leases in the Samreboi area, granted following a Reconnaissance Licence given on 15th June, 2011 and a Prospecting Licence granted on 31st December, 2012.
Those mining leases covered an area in Samreboi, dated July 23, 2021, and an area in Abokoase, dated July 23, 2021.
None of the aforementioned mining leases fell within the Tano Nimiri Forest Reserve, or any forest reserve for that matter, it said.