Discourage Mining In Oti, Volta – Catholic Bishop Tells Chiefs
The Catholic Bishop of Jasikan, Most Rev Gabriel A. Mante, has said that the mining of mineral resources discovered in the Volta and Oti regions should be discouraged, explaining that the consequences of the activities will be detrimental to the people of both regions.
He has therefore called on the traditional rulers in Oti and Volta regions to resist any attempt by the government to mine in those areas.
“…..We call upon the traditional leaders, both in the Oti and Volta Regions, to take a determined and uncompromising stance against the mining of the mineral resources which have now been discovered and those yet to be discovered. We would like to remind them that their greatest responsibility from God and our ancestors is to protect the lives God has entrusted to them to lead.”
In a statement to address the development, Most Rev. A. Mante said mining in and around mountainous areas is not the best and has adverse consequences.
“For instance, if mining would be done on the Akpafu Todzi, Teteman, and other nearby mountainous areas, the constant disturbance of the mountains and vibrations caused by heavy equipment could lead to landslides.
“The result will be that a whole village, such as Teteman or Akpafu Todzi, could slide off, causing deaths and harm to lives and properties. Communities living in the nearby valleys could also be buried by the same landslides. In the case of Bowiri communities, their ancestral home will be destroyed,” Bishop Mante stated.
He further explained that “There is no guarantee that mining in the Oti Region will contribute to the economy of the local people. The aforementioned repercussions, the destruction of the environment, the health implications and the worsening indigenous economy far outweigh the benefits that could be derived from mining the mineral resources”.
The Catholic Bishop of Jasikan further called upon all government officials within both the Volta and Oti regions to re-examine whatever agreement they must have reached with companies that have been invited or contracted to mine these resources, namely: the iron ore, the gold and the lithium.