By Michael Ahinsah
The Executive Director for West Africa Centre for Counter Extremism, Muntari Mumuni Muqthar, says that areas for small scale mining are targets for attacks by extremist groups, posing huge security threats to the country.
Mr. Muqthaf made this statement in an interview with George Sappor on the uniiq breakfast drive after Ghana’s National Security Minister, Mr. Albert Kan Dapaah, hinted that terrorists are likely to invade Ghana through illegal mining (galamsey) activities.
He explained that terrorists are noted for taking advantage of places with little regulation by the State.
Terrorist groups exploit such areas for recruitment, terrorist attacks, and to accumulate funds to finance their illegal activities. Mr. Muqthaf asserted that the Kwahu mining areas are vulnerable areas for terrorist attacks.
“They take advantage of areas that are poorly regulated, and they exploit it either for recruitment, for attacks, or to finance their activities,” he stated.
He further urged the Minister to highlight the necessary issues and ensure that long-term strategic plans to regulate small scale mining activities are well implemented.
When asked what practical solutions can be adopted to solve the issues of illegal mining, Mr. Muqthar stated that it is important to identify the driving factors in the illegal mining communities.
“We need to dissect the issues and look at what are the driving factors in terms of what leads people to engage in galamsey operations. How do we ensure that there is adequate security in the area in terms of what to do to avoid being taken advantage by extremist groups in the area?”