FARMERS AND the youth of adjoining communities in the Dwenewoho enclave in the Nwabiagya South District of Ashanti have petitioned the Asantehene, Otumfuo Osei Tutu II to intervene and control the wanton destruction of the environment through illegal mining activities in the area.
Reports indicate that farmers and the youth are stranded as all activities have come to a standstill as a result of the influx of galamseyers in the area at the expense of their livelihood.
Mr. Solomon Antwi, a farmer in a complaint to the media in Kumasi said farming activities along the Asikasu and Betinko Rivers are on hold because their farmlands are cut off as excavators have dug out the river beds making it impossible to across over to their farms.
According to him, the rivers have been polluted and the land area degraded.
Mr. Antwi said several complaints lodged with the appropriate authorities including traditional authorities have not yielded any positive results.
The concerned farmer said the attention of the chief of Dwenewoho, Nana Twumasi Ampofo and his overlord, Nana Sarfo Kantanka Appiah, Chief of Asante Akropong, has been drawn to the alarming situation in the area.
Mr. Antwi said traditional leadership in the area are not in control as Chinese nationals daily invade the area with heavy machines to engage in illegal mining.
He believes the chiefs are complicit in the illegal mining hence their inability to take action and stop the practice.
Another complainant, Kofi Asante, a native of Dwenewoho said the youth have, on several occasions, kicked against proposals by the stool elders of Dwenewoho to allow mining in the area with the promise that mined areas would be reclaimed after operations while creating employment for the youth.
He said miners unknown to the natives visit the area and encroach upon and destroy lands in the area on daily basis without constraint.
One Kofi Owusu of Anyemsemkrom complained he has been warned not to interfer with exploration and operations of illegal miners in the area.
The youth have, therefore, appealed to the government and the Asantehene, Otumfuo Osei Tutu II to intervene and stop those behind illegal mining in the Dwenewoho area.
BY Kow Richardson