Earlier, Gabby Asare Otchere-Darko said Professor Frimpong-Boateng twisted a conversation he had with him to mean that he was defending galamsey.
Gabby's intervention got Chinese galamseyers freed — Frimpong-Boateng
The former Minister of Environment, Science, Technology, and Innovation, Professor Kwabena Frimpong-Boateng has replied to Gabby Asare Otchere Darko on the illegal mining report he authored.
Otchere-Darko told Accra-based Citi FM in an exclusive interview that Prof. Boateng's accusations are a wrongful twist of facts for reasons best known to him.
Otchere-Darko explained that the only time he engaged the ex-minister was when a client of his law firm had issues with officers of the government’s GalamSTOP operation.
He explained that Heritage Imperial Limited was accused of prospecting for gold and had its equipment seized which made him intervene because the company had all the relevant permits to do what they were doing.
But Prof Frimpong-Boateng in response said Gabby's intervention in the fight against galamsey led to the release of some Chinese galamseyers who were arrested as well as an attack on some members of the Inter-ministerial committee against illegal mining (IMCIM) and journalists, by soldiers who were providing protection for a mining company called Imperial Heritage, for which Gabby Otchere-Darko was a lawyer.
Below is Prof. Frimpong-Boateng's response:
I have come across transcripts of statements made by Mr. Gabby Otchere Darko during an interview he had on CITI FM on Thursday 20th April 2023.
After listening to the words of Mr. Gabby Otchere Darko I became sad for Ghana.
I wondered what happened to us to get to this state, where a person who is supposed to be the lawyer of a mining company exhibited such industrial-scale ignorance about mining laws and regulations.
Going over the videos and pictures depicting the monumental environmental degradation in the areas of operation of Mr. Gabby Otchere Darko’s clients, and seeing his ignorance, I am no longer surprised that Mr. Gabby Otchere Darko has such a pixelated view of the illegal mining landscape in Ghana.
Mr. Gabby Otchere Darko seems to have forgotten that his client has a strong history of acting with impunity.
Donald Entsuah, who operated both C&G Aleska and Heritage Imperial Mining Co. Ltd. has a history of abusing mining permits and regulations.
On 29th November 2016, Mr. Toni Aubyn, then Chief Executive Officer of the Minerals Commission during the NDC administration, wrote to C&G Aleska that the Company was "seriously engaged in illegal mining on its prospecting license".
On 30th January 2017, Mr. Aubyn wrote again to C&G Aleska for "undertaking mining activities illegally without obtaining all the requisite permits and approvals".
Again, on 2nd October 2017, Hon. John Peter Amewu, the first NPP Minister for Lands and Natural Resources wrote to G&G Aleska regarding the Dwuabo concession and directed that “in view of the fact that C&G Aleska does not have a valid Mining Operating Permit and that the Ministry has not yet ratified your mining lease, you are directed NOT T0 CARRY 0UT ANY MINING OPERATIONS in the concession until your mining lease has been ratified.
C&G Aleska metamorphosed into Heritage Imperial Mining Co. Ltd. operated by Donald Entsuah. This time they settled in the Apaprama and Kobro forests in Manso in the Ashanti Region and immediately started active mining without even a prospecting license with the attendant destruction of forests, farmlands, and water bodies.
It was in these forest reserves that the IMCIM task force attempted to stop the illegal operations of Donald Entsuah and his Heritage Imperial Company in 2018.
Mr. Gabby Otchere Darko, it is laughable that you claim to have called me to seek information on your client. If you needed any information, you could have called the Minerals Commission.
You know I did not operate mining information services.
You called to tell me that your client had a valid mining license and all necessary permits. I told you that Heritage Imperial Co. Ltd. did not possess documents permitting it to undertake active mining.
That notwithstanding through your intervention the Chinese, who were arrested were released by the task force. The many soldiers who were providing security service to your client’s company attacked the IMCIM task force team and damaged the vehicle-carrying journalists who were covering the IMCIM operations.
The unfortunate scenes were captured on camera and shown on JOY TV.
Mr. Otchere Darko, I don’t think you have retrograde amnesia, but I still want to refresh your memory about the destruction of the environment that had been perpetrated by your client over the years with the accompanying videos and pictures from Diaso forest and Apaprama.
Even if your clients had all licenses and permits, with the destruction that they caused, not only should they have been stopped from operating a mining company indefinitely, but they should also have been prosecuted, probably jailed, made to reclaim the land, vegetate it and clean the water bodies.
Finally, the [former] Minister, whom Mr. Gabby Otchere Darko thinks had a weak understanding of his position, has done more for this country and the world than Mr. Otchere Darko would ever dream of in a million years.
Prof. Dr. Med. Kwabena Frimpong-Boateng In the enclosure are:
1. Pictures (13) documenting the devastation of the Environment caused by Clients of Mr. Gabby Otchere Darko
2. Two Reports by Mr. Erastus Asare Donkor shown on Joy TV https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mhEVWkopRBU
3. Letter from Tony Aubyn to C&G Aleska, dated 29th November 2016 suspending mining operations of C&G Aleska
4. Letter from Mr. Tony Aubyn dated 30th January 2017 suspending mining operations of C&G Aleska
5. Letter from Hon. John Peter Amewu to C&G Aleska dated 2nd October 2017 suspending mining operations of C&G Aleska
Pictures (13) documenting the devastation of the Environment caused by Clients of Mr. Gabby Otchere Darko
Letter from Tony Aubyn to C&G Aleska, dated 29th November 2016 suspending mining operations of C&G Aleska
Letter from Mr. Tony Aubyn dated 30th January 2017 suspending mining operations of C&G Aleska
Letter from Hon. John Peter Amewu to C&G Aleska dated 2nd October 2017 suspending mining operations of C&G Aleska
Authored by: Prof. Dr. Med. Dr. h.c (multi) Kwabena Frimpong-Boateng, Accra, 23rd April 2023
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