Management of Xtra Gold Ghana Mining Limited, the company whose excavators and other equipment were set on fire during anti-galamsey operations in the Eastern Region by soldiers recently, has insisted that the company does not engage in illegal mining and is planning to seek legal redress for the equipment destroyed.
According to the company, which has links with the NPP National Women’s Organiser Kate Gyamfua, it has all legitimate documents to conduct mining activities in the country and said they have not been mining on water bodies and in forest reserves.
Secretary in charge of one of the concessions of the company at Akyem Pameng, Nana Asante Boadi, said Xtra Gold is a Canadian mining firm which has been operating since 2006 and holds five concessions in Ghana and its mother company, Xtra-Gold Resources Corporation listed on the New York Stock Exchange.
“It has immensely been a reliable source of government’s revenue generation for development by paying its taxes religiously to the state,” he said, adding that “the company has given jobs to over 700 people directly and indirectly, especially from its catchment communities.”
He said the parent company would not even allow the local subsidiaries to breach the laws in the places they have been operating, and added that they have always been careful in their operations.
“Xtra Gold Mining has been paying royalties and has fulfilled all its obligations as a mining company prescribed by the Mining Act. Its Corporate Social Responsibilities to communities where it operates are outstanding. The company has built modern toilet facilities, boreholes and given out a percentage of the gold mined to communities within its five concessions every quarter. What’s more, Xtra Gold has built a clinic at Akyem Pameng and a palace.”
“As a reputable company we have never, and will not attempt to engage in galamsey as, it is wrongfully rumored,” he said, adding “the company’s mining site is not close to a river body and the Atiwa Forest as it is being alleged. We rather have four dugout wells for our operations and reclaim the lands immediately after our operations.”
Nana Asante said that “the invasion of the concession sites by the military on three different occasions to set 20 excavators and other equipment ablaze on suspicion of illegal mining is wrong, unruly and utterly and out of place.”
He said “No changfang machine was spotted at the sites. Video footages on television and social media channels clearly show destruction of rivers and water bodies by the use of changfang machines. But when the taskforce went to Xtra Gold mining concessions, they never showed video footages of destruction of rivers and water bodies in Atiwa. Residents in the concession communities have never complained of any problem against the company destroying their farms.”
He said “the instigators misled the inconsiderate military who were interested in carrying out the operation in a manner to satisfy their quest to show power against officials of the company who are diligently doing their work legally.”