Maxam Ghana Limited, the firm at the center of the explosion that killed 13 people and devastated the whole community at Appiate in the Prestea Huni-Valley Municipality of the Western Region, has been fined $6 million by the government.
Samuel Abdulai Jinapor, Minister of Lands and Natural Resources announced this on Monday, February 7, 2022. The amount is made up of a $1 million fine and $5 million that the corporation decided to pay to the government following extensive discussions with the Ministry, according to a press statement issued by the Minister.
The statement said the fine was imposed after the report of the three-member committee constituted by the Minister to undertake independent investigations into the matter affirmed some regulatory breaches on the part of the company, in the manufacture, storage and transportation of explosives for mining and other civil works.
The Minister issued a substantial fine due to the nature and totality of the circumstances leading to this unfortunate tragedy, according to the Statement. The fines for the stated breaches, according to L.I. 2177, vary from 600 Ghana Cedis (GHS600.00) to ten thousand United States Dollars (USD10,000).
The Minister has also set out fourteen (14) conditions to be met by the company before the restoration of its operating permit. The measures include a ban on the transportation of Ammonium Nitrate and Fuel Oil (ANFO) on a public road to a mine or civil work site unless expressly permitted by the Chief Inspector of Mines.
Other measures include explosives being guarded by two escort vehicles, one in front and one at the back, both having sirens to warn people about the explosives.
The company is to notify the Chief Inspector of Mines of its intention to transport explosives, forty-eight (48) hours before the scheduled transportation, and mine inspectors are to inspect every transportation to ensure that all regulations and protocols are complied with.
The Minister said the fourteen 14 measures are to apply, fully, to all companies involved in the manufacture, supply, transportation, and use of explosives.
The Statement also said sanctions against Jocyderk Logistics Limited and Arthanns Enterprise and Transport Services, two entities involved in the Appiate tragic incident, are being reviewed and will be applied and communicated in due course.