Although he campaigned for Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo during the 2016 elections, A Plus seems to be losing hope in the president as he posits that the country’s leader is now focused on retaining power rather than being tough in his fight against activities bedeviling the nation.
In the wake of concerns by the Forestry Commission that some powerful members of the ruling party are behind illegal mining (galamsey) in forest reserves, Kwame Asare Obeng, as the political activist is known in real life, argues that the president “has also become an ordinary Ghanaian politician who only thinks about the next election and not the next generation.”
He is of the view that the president, instead of succumbing to the wrongs, should rather be resolute and change the narrative for the sake of posterity.
“At your age, what will happen if you save the environment and lose an election?” he asks. “Your maker will reward you better if u save the environment and lose the election than to win an election, ride in a convoy around the country with police and military, fly around the world with 12 million dollars in 9 months to speak English like ‘akoo te brofo’ at conferences.”
In August 2017, a combined team of military and police personnel tasked with the aim of stamping out illegal mining activities in the country was inaugurated.
The president at the time said his decision to wage war on galamsey, was one he does not regret and was prepared to see through till the end.
During an interaction at Breman Asikuma in the Central region, president Akufo-Addo reiterated that he was committed to safeguarding the environment for the present and future generations even if it would cost him his bid for a second term.
“Some young men were not happy. Some insulted and vilified me, threatening to vote against me in 2020. But what I did was to protect the environment and do what God told me will be best for Ghana. I will not think about the implications it will have on elections,” he remarked.
Two years on and A Plus has observed the president is failing to keep his promise. He alleges in a social media post on Tuesday that some bigwigs of the New Patriotic Party (NPP) are involved in galamsey, daring them to swear by a deity to prove their innocence.
He says: “When government formed ‘Operation Vanguard’ to fight galamsey (illegal mining), I thought they were serious about the protection of our environment. Little did I know they were only using the force to steal mining concession, confiscate gold and equipment from locals and jail landowners just to pave way for some few NPP big men to take over and do worse to the environment than before.
“We were all in this country when the deputy speaker of parliament, a lawmaker for that matter suggested that people suspected of engaging in illegal mining must be shot and killed on the spot without trial. If I meet him, I’ll give him a gun and a list of Big NPP guys who are now suspected NPP galamsey kingpins.
“As I type, galamsey is back in full swing, led by members of the same government which wanted to use the shoot to kill approach to end it. Go to any galamsey community and they will give you their names. I want the president to call them and ask them to swear by Antoa or Nogokpo (bible takes too long) if they are not the new ‘Lords’ of galamsey in this country.”