Operation Halt II arrests 26 'galamseyers' at Patase

The Operation Halt II team on Monday, May 5, 2023, arrested 26 suspects, found operating at an illegal mining site, popularly known as galamsey, and also engaging in other poor environmental practices, at Patase, Wassa Dunkwa, in the Wassa Amenfi East District of the Western Region.

Operation Halt

The suspects were found engaging in illegal mining in defiance of the government's ban that continued to wreak havoc on the environment and water bodies.

The suspects, including four Togolese, were found engaging in illegal mining, sand winning, and lumbering, in defiance of the government's ban placed on these activities that continued to wreak havoc on the environment and water bodies, including River Tano.

The arrest of the 26 suspects followed an order by the Deputy Minister of Lands and Natural Resources, George Mireku Duker, when he was accompanied by journalists and a team of Operation HaltII personnel, aboard a Ghana Airforce aircraft, to conduct an aerial assessment of Operation Halt II, at Wassa Dunkwa.

The deputy minister also asked Kwasi Addaeto to produce a permit authorizing him to engage in lumbering at Patase.

Launched in April 2021, Operation Halt II, made up of personnel from the Ghana Armed Forces, sought to remove all persons and mining equipment from water bodies and forest reserves in the country, including decommissioning and demobilising equipment where necessary.

Over the period, the team worked on major rivers, such as Pra, Offin, Ankobra, Birim, and Ayensu, as well as forest reserves in the country.

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