…And sets himself on collision course with breadwinning ‘galamseyers’

It has been less than five months since William Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo was sworn in as President of the Republic of Ghana on January 7, this year, and already Ghanaians have come to the realization that the man lied his way to power.

Among the generality of the disappointed masses, however, small-time illegal miners, notoriously called ‘galamseyers’, appear to be the ones laughing at the wrong sides of their mouths the most.

As the President now abandons his campaign time assurance that galamseyers would be allowed rightful pillaging under his regime and now turns round to clamp down on the vocation, some of these galamseyers who contributed cash to Akufo-Addo’s campaign have now become enemies.

One of them, Patrick Agyei Dankwa, of Agyei Dankwa Investments, recently invoked the dreaded Ashanti river god, Antoa Nyama, against Akufo-Addo, cursing the President and his administration for ushering in the anti-galamsey clampdown that led to his mining equipment being burnt.

As the Antoa Nyama curse hangs, however, the President has not been dissuaded from lying about galamsey. Last Thursday, Akufo-Addo announced to Ghanaians living in Conakry, Guinea, that he had come to the resolve to end ‘galamsey’ while he was still on the 2016 campaign trail.

“One of the advantages of campaigning is that you get to see Ghana. It is the exposure I had in this last campaign of what was actually going on in the field that hardened my decision, God-willing, if I was to win the election, to make the fight against ‘galamsey’ one of my priorities.”

But any Ghanaian who follows the news knows that this claim by the President is a dirty lie. Sometime in September 2016, the President, who was then Presidential Candidate Akufo-Addo, had promised to never end ‘galamsey’ if he was elected President.

Indeed, a voice clip of that promise was a few weeks ago the subject of media reports all over the country. In that voice clip, candidate Akufo-Addo is heard saying: “The NDC people are all about Ghana, that I, who is seriously looking for ways to create jobs for our young men and young women, that if I come (become President) I will stop galamsey (illegal mining).

“There isn’t a single iota of truth in it at all. It is not true today neither will it be true tomorrow.”

The then NPP Presidential Candidate Akufo-Addo had said this in fluent Twi to wild applause from galamseyers at a campaign ground in the Western Region in 2016.

This promise by Mr. Akufo-Addo had been like a rallying call to illegal miners even as many of them lined up to contribute money to support the campaign of the NPP.

That is why, in the aftermath of the election of Akufo-Addo as President, a sudden u-turn to rather fight galamsey has left the President in the estimation of galamseyers as a traitor worse than Brutus himself.

In the wake of the government’s declaration of war on galamsey, some 300 youth of Abekoase in the Atiwa District attacked and burned equipment worth some $1.5million belonging to Agyei Dankwa Investments. Patrrick Agyei Dankwa, CEO of the company, who says he has a permit from the authorities, was left with no choice but to invoke the gods.

He cursed President Akufo-Addo invoking Antoa Nyama, with Schnapps and eggs to set on Akufo-Addo and his government and mete out voodoo justice for the betrayal.

However, it has since become obvious that it was not going to take just invocation of Antoa Nyama to dissuade President Akufo-Addo from continuously lying to Ghanaians like Hitler’s own Joseph Goebbels.

The man, who had promised on his honor during the 2016 campaign to never end ‘galamsey,’ is today claiming that while he was on the same campaign trail he had come to a firm resolve to end galamsey!

And the galamsey lie was just one dimension of his fantabulous speech to Ghanaians living in Conakry – the President also promised to create alternative jobs for ‘galamseyers.’

According to him, he has put in place a cabinet committee headed by the Minister for Environment, Science, Technology and Innovation, Prof. Kwabena Frimpong-Boateng, to as part of battling galamsey, create alternative jobs for galamseyers.

Interestingly, this same President, who had promised the jobs in Conakry, was, just less than a week ago, pleading with the University Teachers Association of Ghana to have mercy on his government as the national treasury was not in position to cater for improvement in conditions of service that the teachers were demanding.

“There are some things that should be easy to deal with but will prove difficult for some time to come largely because there is no money,” the President had said.

He had then quickly blamed the erstwhile NDC government for the state of the treasury, “The economic situation my government and I inherited was not the best; both in terms of the growth of our economy and the balances available in the public treasury. Many of the problems you are putting here are the results of a poor office treasury.”

Naturally, in the face of the claim by the President that the national coffers is not in a good state to even support improvement in conditions of service for teachers, Ghanaians are left to wonder how this President can come up with alternative jobs that will be attractive to ex-galamseyers who on the average earned 10 times more than the teachers.


Source: Fiifi Samuels

The Republic News Online

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