Commander of the Joint Security Operations – Operation Vanguard, Colonel Michael Amoah Ayisi, has stressed the need formore logistics at their disposal as they battle to bring to a close the activities of illegal miners.
Operation Vanguard came into being shortly after the President, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo declare war on the galamsey menace.
And having been operating in the Ashanti, Eastern, Western Regions and recently Central Region over the past six months, the team has chalked some successes even though they are challenged in some fronts.
In explaining their performance to the media during a workshop organized by the Media Coalition Against Galamsey at the Coconut Groove Hotel, Colonel Amoah Ayisi mentioned that, they have covered about 80% of all the regions involved steadily, however, they don’t have enough cars to carry out their duties efficiently.
In as much the issue of transport is a major challenge, they also lack adequate lighting gadgets for their night duties since their “opponents” (galamseyers) have changed their mode and time of operation.
This is coupled with outgrown pits and trenches that have not been covered which pose danger for the troops, particularly in the night. The other major challenge is the non availability of the short range drones that could take clear and evident-based pictures to help prosecute the perpetuators.
So far, Operation Vanguard has arrested 1012 suspects in their 646 operations; and out of this number, 124 are Chinese Nationals and only 22 of them have been convicted. Other Nationals arrested are; 4 Burkinabes; 3 Nigerians; 6 Togolese; one Benin national and one Nigerien.
Also, 107 persons have been convicted whilst others are on bail and the rest are facing the courts. In all, 370 excavators, 910 water pumping machines, 54 motor bikes, 3368 diesel machines seized and destroyed. In addition, 60 vehicles, 83 arms and 1375 ammos have been seized.
Ghana |Atinkaonline.com |Patrick Ofoe Nudzi