A disturbing video going round on social media has given Ghanaians a fair state of the battle against illegal mining, popularly referred to as ‘Galamsey’ and probably the mindset of some of the people involved in this act.
To be clear, not all small scale mining are illegal. A lot of private individuals are mining concessions legally and ensuring that they protect the environment in that regard.
However, there are also a great number of people who are also involved in illegal mining leading to a lot of long term problems. The worrying bit to the whole thing is that, many foreigners are involved in this act with the support of some unseen yet powerful people in the society.
Even though the government has tried to in various ways to combat this menace, there has not been a real headway.
For many young people who are involved in this business with the excuse that there are no job opportunities in the countries, the president’s recent statement that teachers should not look at becoming wealthy through the profession is good reason to stay where they are.
In the video, a young man involved in galamsey is heard criticizing the president for telling teachers to look at other streams of income to add up to whichever amount they make. He added that they will continue the galamsey business since there is no hope outside.
To get an insight into his thinking of the impact of the activities of illegal mining on the environment, he casually added that they will continue mining till the land is destroyed, then they will relocate to the United States of America.
With such a mindset, are we even sure the battle can be won?