The Ghanaian government on Monday assigned a joint military and police task force to curb illegal mining.
The 400-member joint force is deployed in the Ashanti, Eastern and Western regions where the situation is most severe.
Ghanaian President Nana Akufo-Addo reiterated his government’s commitment to ending illegal mining activities.
The launch of the task force named ‘Operation Vanguard’ comes barely one month after 24 people were trapped and killed in mining pits in the Ashanti and Western Regions of the country.
At the launching ceremony, Minister for Environment, Science, Technology and Innovation Kwabena Frimpong Boateng urged the troops to operate within the law and not abuse the rights of inhabitants.
“You are going there to protect lives, properties and the environment and that should be your focus,” the minister said.
The task force is expected to stay in the illegal mining areas until degraded lands and rivers are restored and the re-afforestation program is undertaken.