Brong Ahafo Regional Security Council takes proactive steps to secure the Bui Dam against Illegal Mining Activities

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Illegal mining activities remain one of the challenges confronting
the Brong Ahafo Region. Some areas affected by galamsey operations
include Susuanso, Yamfo, Techire, Adrobaa, Tanoso and Afrisipakrom, in
the Tano North District, Kenyasi, Ntotroso and its environs in the
Asutifi North District, Dokokyina/Bui National Park in the Banda
District and Atuna in the Jaman South District.
Hon. Eric Opoku, Brong Ahafo Regional Minister speaking at the Third
Quarter Meeting of the Regional Co-ordinating Council for the year
2014, on Monday, 29th September, 2014, said the most serious challenge
facing the region currently is the situation at Dokokyina where
Galamsey activities is not only a threat to the Bui Dam leading to the
pollution and silting of the Dam thereby culminating in the eventual
destruction of the Dam, but also poses serious security challenges to
the stability of the area as well as the safety of the dam.
Dokokyina is a community which is located near the Bui Dam and was one
of the villages that were resettled by the Bui Power Authority (BPA)
to make way for the construction of the Bui Hydro Electric Dam. At the
time of the resettlement, there were 36 households at Dokokyina out of
which 30 including the legitimate Chief (Odikro) of the area had
agreed to relocate to the resettlement sites, leaving 6 households in
the area who refused in spite of all persuasions by the BPA, to
Hon. Eric Opoku said, the refusal of the occupants of the six
households attracted other nationals including Malians, Burkinabes,
Beninoires, Ivoirians, Nigerians and Nigeriens who had infiltrated the
community to engage in activities such as illegal mining, thereby
causing massive destruction to the environment which poses a threat to
the conservation of the Bui Hydro-Electric Generating Station.
He said REGSEC with support from the National Security Council
therefore deployed a combined team of Military and Police Personnel to
evict the illegal miners with the view to preserving the Dam as well
as the Forest reserve. “It is our intention to embark on land
reclamation exercises to restore the degraded and destroyed lands to
their useful states. It is hoped that the inhabitants of those areas
would have their farm lands restored to them.”
He assured the general public that REGSEC will continue to take
proactive and determined steps to secure the Forest reserve and the
Bui Generating Station which is a priceless national asset.
Chieftaincy and Land Disputes
He entreated Nananom to take measures to resolve the disputes since
they were impacting negatively on the smooth development of the
region. He stated that, there are currently 49 Chieftaincy disputes
pending before the High Courts (2) and Judiciary Committee (47) of the
Brong Ahafo Regional House of Chiefs.
According to Hon. Eric Opoku, the Brong Ahafo Region is reputed to be
one of the peaceful regions in the country. He said this feat has been
achieved as a result of the hard work of the Brong Ahafo Regional
Security Council (REGSEC), the Municipal/District Committees (MUSEC
and DISEC), Nananom and other security services in the region.
He announced that the number of crime statistics at the end of the
second quarter of this year are as follows: – the number of criminal
cases reported by the end of July, 2014 was 19 compared with 52 cases
recorded by the same period in 2013, therefore showing a reduction of
63 percent.
Meanwhile, the Police-to-Population Ratio currently stands at 1:1,105
which indicates a major policing deficit. “Even though the Ratio is
very disproportionate, because of the resources available, the Police
have been able to effectively maintain a stable security situation in
the region.” saids the Regional Minister.
Hon. Eric Opoku disclosed that, the University of Energy and Natural
Resources has commenced its operations and growing from strength to
strength. “The current students’ population stands at Seven Hundred
and Fourteen (714) made up of One hundred and Fifty Four (154) 3rd
year students and Five Hundred and Sixty (560) 2nd year studentr while
admissions are on-going for first year students for the 2014/2015
Academic year.
He said the government, in consonance with its programme to upgrade
all Polytechnics to Technical University status, has provided the
Sunyani Polytechnic with a total amount of GHC 3,082,879.70 to
construct Ultra-modern Science Park Complex which when completed will
contain lecture theatres, auditoriums, laboratories and staff offices
and the renovation of Polytechnic Council Chamber all aimed at
expanding the existing facilities to a befitting status.
He adviced all Heads of Second Cycle Institutions charging unapproved
fees to desist from it: Hence, the current fees for new students in
boarding houses in Senior High Schools across the country is GHC
668.50 each while day students will pay GHC 355.50. For continuing
students, the approved fees payable per term is GHC 385.00 for
boarding students and GHC 73.00 for day students.
The Hon. Regional Minister said, 5 Polyclinics have been provided at
Techimantia, Wamfie, Bomaa, Kwatire and Nkrankwanta, at a total cost
of fourteen million two hundred and sixty five thousand Ghana cedis
(GHC 14,262,000.00).
“To improve maternal and child care as well as accelerate the
reduction in mortality, a total of 136 CHPS Compounds have been
constructed and are fully functional across the region.”
He said as at the end of August 2014, the Brong Ahafo Region had
achieved the following positive indicators as a mark of improvement in
health care delivery:
Zero reported incidence of Guinea Worm since 2010
HIV/AIDS prevalence has remained stable at 2.0% (S.S)
Out-Patient Per Capita increased from 1.6 in 2012 to 1.7 in 2013
implying that at least two persons in the region had the chance to
visit a health facility.
He said over 117 boreholes have been successfully drilled under the
Government of Ghana/COCOBOD Investment Project. Also, 48 concrete well
pads have constructed and 48 Solar powered pumps installed under the
project. “Currently, under the 20,000 Borehole Construction Project, a
total number of 171 boreholes have been successfully drilled and a
total of 12 concrete well pads have been constructed as well as 12
hand pumps fitted.”
According to Hon. Eric Opoku, The construction of the Bui Dam coupled
with the successful installation of the Kintampo and Mim sub-stations
by Weldy-Lamonde, under the Government’s Energy Expansion Programme
are success stories which need to be emphasized. He stated that, the
Region has witnessed tremendous improvement in the energy sector in
recent times relating to increased provision of rural electrification
to many communities.
“In this regard, a total number of 839 communities have so far
benefited with a lot more being connected to the grid.”
The Ghana Highways Authority has since 2009 been undertaking the
construction of a total of 180.647 Kilometres of roads at a total cost
of GHC 77,700,502.39 in the region.
Hon. Eric Opoku said, The Department of Feeder Roads has also
undertaken the construction of 533.29Kms roads at a total of GHC
60,440,217.23 under the Cocoa Roads Improvement Projects across the
region and this has led to the improvement of the road network in the
cocoa growing communities.

Kofi Oppong Kyekyeku

I am a Ghanaian Broadcast Journalist/Writer who has an interest in General News, Sports, Entertainment, Health, Lifestyle and many more.

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