Akwatia group applauds government takeover of GCDGL
The Akwatia Development Association (ADA) has lauded the government for taking over the management of the Great Consolidated Diamonds Ghana Limited (GCDGL) after abrogating the agreement with the subsidiary of the JOSPONG Group of Companies.
The group said when the GCDGL assumed the management of the Ghana Consolidated Diamonds (GCD) — as it was originally known — in 2011, it concentrated on a supposedly lucrative sand-winning business, estimated to fetch about GH¢60,000 daily, instead of the core mandate of mining diamonds.
The government took over the GCD in September 2019 when it accused the JOSPONG Group of Companies — which had become the owners of the entity — of breaching sections of the regulations that gave the company the authority to run the diamond mining firm.
At a news conference in Akwatia in the Eastern Region, the President of ADA, Dr Joseph Amuzu, said “the take-over of the mines from the GCDGL by the State Interest and Governance Authority (SIGA) on September 19, 2019 did not create any chaos in Akwatia and has not deprived the communities of any livelihood, as is being claimed by a section of the media”.
He said the GCDGL never provided facilities in Akwatia “over the eight years of mismanagement and lack of investment in the company”.
“The people of Akwatia are rather delighted that the government has listened to their cries after these years of sorrow and lamentation; already we are seeing the good work of the new interim management committee,” he said.
Dr Amuzu said after sleeping in darkness for two years, electricity supply had been restored to GCD bungalows and the mines, while large quantities of drugs had been supplied to the GCD Hospital, thanks to SIGA and its acting Director General, Mr Stephen Asamoah-Boateng.
He thanked President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, SIGA, the Divestiture Implementation Committee, members of the ADA and the people of Akwatia for the successful takeover of the GCD.
Dr Amuzu alleged that heaps of sand which were to be used to reclaim mined out lands to enable agricultural activities and other economic ventures had been sold during the period the GCDGL was in charge.
The Vice-President of the ADA, Mr Kwadwo Obeng-Darko, advised the IMC and SIGA to look out for a competent investor to take over the mines to generate more revenue for the government and absorb the large number of unemployed youth in the area.
He said any investor who would assume responsibility of the mines needed about $70 million to put the investment into productive venture.
He gave an assurance that the association would encourage any investor who would take over the mines to recruit a sizeable number of its workers from Akwatia and its environs.