The Ministry of Lands and Natural Resources has debunked media reports suggesting that the Bureau of National Investigations (BNI) has cited the Okyenhene, Osagyefo Amoatia Ofori Panin, of being engaged in galamsey activities in the Kyebi area.
According to the Ministry, the 31-page report by the BNI only recorded a said perception against the Okyenhene’s Palace and therefore did not implicate the Chief.
“To the best of this Ministry’s knowledge, the Okyenhene’s Foundation has rather been at the forefront of the fight against illegal mining,” a statement signed by the Minister, Mr John Peter Amewu said.
“The Ministry will continue to urge the Okyenhene, his Foundation and other traditional authorities to continue to support this necessary fight to save the environment,” the statement noted.
Read also: I’m not involved in galamsey – Okyehene
Meanwhile, the Okyehene in an earlier interview with the Daily Graphic said the allegations leveled against him were mere fabrications by his detractors, including some of his family members opposed to his reign.
Below is the letter from the Ministry of Lands and Natural Resources
STATEMENT ON MEDIA REPORTS MENTIONING OKYENHENE’S PALACE IN ILLEGAL
The Ministry of Lands and Natural Resources has taken notice of media publications that the Bureau of National Investigations (BNI) has in a report mentioned the Okyenhene’s Palace as “perceived to be behind illegal mining activities in the Kibi area.”
Media Publications further reported that members of an anti-illegal mining task force purportedly linked to the Okyenhene’s Palace “allegedly extort monies from illegal miners in the area.”
The Ministry hereby informs the general public as follows:
1. The said BNI report only recorded a said perception against the Okyenhene’s Palace. It did not accuse the Okyenhene or the Palace of being complicit in illegal mining activities.
2. Checks by this Ministry indicate that the last known environmental protection task force from the Palace was disbanded over three (3) years ago.
3. To the best of this Ministry’s Knowledge, the Okyenhene’s Foundation has rather been at the forefront of the fight against illegal mining and the Ministry will continue to urge the Okyenhene, his Foundation and other traditional authorities to continue supporting this necessary fight to save the environment.
4. The Ministry welcomes the support of responsible community action against illegal mining and thanks the general public and the media for their total support and commitment to the fight against illegal mining.
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