Mr Bissue, in a statement, said he was innocent of the allegation levelled against him in the documentary and said he has not engaged in any corruption, criminality or misconduct.
“I have taken notice of the contents of the latest documentary by documentary by Tiger eye P.I titled 'Galamsey Fraud'. I would like to state, at the very outset, that I am innocent of the allegations levelled against me the documentary, as I was not and have not been engaged in any acts of corruption, criminality or misconduct,” he said.
He said his decision to step aside was in the interest of transparency and accountability and so as to not compromise the work of the Inter-ministerial committee on illegal mining.
“However, in the interest of transparency and accountability, and so as to not compromise the work of the Inter-Ministerial committee on Illegal Mining, I have informed the President of the republic, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, and the Minister for Environment, Science, Technology and Innovation, Prof. Kwabena Frimpong Boateng, Chairperson of the IMCIM, of my decision to step aside from my position as secretary to the committee, pending an investigations into the allegations,” Bissue said.
In the exposé, Bissue emerges as a facilitator for a company seeking to circumvent laid down processes to be given clearance for its mining operations.
He is seen receiving money to ensure the speedy ‘clearance’ of a mining company in order that it can begin mining as soon as possible. He is heard in the video instructing his subordinates over the phone to “fast track” the processing of the company’s documents.
In the video, many more people connected to the work of the IMCIM, otherwise known as the Presidential Committee on Environment and Natural Resources, are seen in the video facilitating the payment of negotiated fees.
The Inter-Ministerial Committee on Illegal Mining, comprises the ministries of Environment, Science, Technology and Innovation (MESTI); Lands and Natural Resources (MLNR); Local Government and Rural Development (MLGRD); Chieftaincy & Religious Affairs; Regional Re-Organisation and Development; Water and Sanitation; Interior; Defence; and Information.
The committee was commissioned in March 2017 by President Akufo-Addo to sanitise the mining sector and also develop a roadmap towards lifting an indefinite ban on small scale mining that lasted for about 21 months.
The committee is chaired by Prof Kwabena Frimpong Boateng, Minister for Environment, Science, Technology, and Innovation.
To support the committee, the president also inaugurated a joint security taskforce (Operation Vanguard) that patrolled mining areas in the country to enforce the ban, seize or destroy mining equipment of those who flouted the ban, as well as arrest offenders for prosecution.