Africa and Sub-Saharan African Environmental IssuesEnvironmental IssuesMining

“Mining communities in Ghana need maximum protection systems” – Betty Osei Bonsu

Accra, Jan.26, – Betty Osei Bonsu, former assistant environmental officer of Goldfields Ghana Limited has urged Ghanaians to provide maximum security systems for communities within the mining areas. She said Appiatse disaster isn’t the first and would not be the last if no precautionary measures are put in place. Appiatse, a community in the western region of Ghana suffered an explosion which claimed about seventeen lives with many others injured and properties destroyed.

In an interview with, Miss Osei Bonsu said Ghana has suffered numerous disasters over the past years but no long-term measures were put in place to avoid these disasters from recurring.

“Disasters like explosion happen in Ghana almost every year, people send their condolences. They provide financial and material support to victims and that’s the end. No measures are put in place to stop them from happening again.

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“Appiatse explosion isn’t a new situation, there have been a number of explosions. In October 2017, gas explosion in Accra killed hundreds of people. What did we do about it? No precautionary measures were put in place afterwards. Filling stations are still embedded within residential communities. Flooding happens every year, people die every year, no measures to stop them”.

According to Miss Osei Bosu the Appiatse situation is popular because it affected many people. She asserts there are many victims of mining activities day in and day out but nobody talks about them. She believes Ghana do not have proper security or monitoring systems to check the day-to-day activities of the mining companies in our communities.

“People are dying all the time in mining communities, Appiatse explosion is popular because it affected many people. These are trends that happen all the time”.

“In fact, even the government don’t know what exactly happened at Appiatse because there isn’t any monitoring stations or CCTVs to check the day-to-day activities of mining companies. They are not sure of the number of people who have died in Appiatse so far.

“In Tarkwa and Bogoso communities people die out of the mining activities. We don’t talk about them, probably because they didn’t die in large numbers like Appiatse. Nobody is frequently checking the health and safety departments of our mining communities; we have a failed system in that regard.  Only few mining companies are dedicated to health and safety. Private institutions like Goldfields Ghana are even dedicated to safety measures than the public institutions.

Betty Osei Bonsu, who now project coordinator for Green Africa Youth Organization (GAYO), has therefore called on government to provide proper security systems and ensure strict compliance of health and safety measures especially within our mining communities.

“Government shouldn’t just put in place occupational health and safety individuals, there should be CCTV cameras within the mining communities to monitor activities and incidents within those areas Mining communities deserve maximum protection. We should invest in their safety.

“When there are discussions around development, all we hear about is the famous ‘No money Syndrome’ but look at the donations and the facilities  Appiatse victims are receiving. We are always reactive instead of been active to stop bad situations. This is a funny system”. She added.



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