Obuasi: 79 suspected illegal miners arrested


At least 79 suspected illegal miners who were trapped in the Obuasi Gold mine underground have exited, the company said in a statement.
The suspects are in police custody assisting in investigations.

“The individuals, who had entered the underground area without authorisation, walked out of the mine through the main exit point on their own accord and are in the custody of the Ghana Police Service.

No injuries were reported,” AngloGold’s statement said.

Heavily armed soldiers fired shots to disperse protesters on Tuesday (30 May) in the gold mining town of Obuasi in the Ashanti Region as protesters massed up outside the local police station, chanting, burning car tyres and blocking roads to release the illegal miners.

It was unclear how many illegal miners were inside the shaft but it is possible that they were staying underground because they feared getting arrested.

Since taking office in 2017, President Nana Akufo-Addo has promised to rid the country of “galamsey”, the name given by locals to illegal mining.

The authorities regularly crack down on illegal sites, taking away excavators, but still the practice continues.

The Obuasi mine, which extends up to 1,500 metres beneath the surface, produced 250,000 ounces of gold last year.