In what has become a recurring problem in Ghana’s mining industry, a group of illegal miners, commonly known as galamseyers, attacked the Golden Star Wassa Mine in Benso, Western Region on Thursday, March 16, 2023.
Per our findings, according to the Head of Group Corporate Affairs of the mining company, Gerard Hillary Osei Boakye, the attackers destroyed several company properties, including vehicles, an ambulance, pickups, excavators, and air conditioners.
The illegal miners had reportedly invaded a concession of the mining company, prompting the company to engage them as part of their modus operandi and telling them to move away. However, the miners returned and in an attempt to drive them away from the land with the help of the police, they got infuriated and retaliated.
Although it is unclear if there were any casualties during the attack, Mr. Boakye noted that some of the illegal miners might have been injured in the process, which could have fueled their anger and retaliation.
The police have launched an investigation into the incident to bring the perpetrators to justice. Meanwhile, the attack has raised concerns about the growing problem of illegal mining in Ghana, which poses a significant threat to the country’s mining industry and the environment.
The Golden Star Wassa Mine is one of the largest gold mines in Ghana and is operated by Golden Star Resources, a Canadian company that has been operating in Ghana since the late 90s.
The attack is a reminder of the need for the government and stakeholders in the mining industry to take urgent action to curb illegal mining activities and ensure the sustainability of the sector.