A member of the legal team of the National Democratic Congress (NDC), Godwin Edudzi Tamakloe says the posture of the Attorney General (AG) with regards to an illegal mining report put together by former Environment Minister, Frimpong-Boateng contradicts government’s touted commitment to ending galamsey.
According to the lawyer, Mr. Godfred Dame should have requested for further investigation into the allegations made by the renowned surgeon instead of dismissing the report.
His assertion follows a revelation by the Attorney General that Professor Kwabena Frimpong-Boateng, a former Minister for Environment, Science, Technology and Innovation and a former chairman of the Inter-Ministerial Committee on Illegal Mining (IMCIM) failed to provide the necessary evidence to back his report on illegal mining for the prosecution of persons indicted.
“Several attempts by the Police to obtain further information from Professor Frimpong Boateng to substantiate the allegations in the Report and to assist them to conduct further investigations proved futile.
“The Professor refused to provide any further information to the police. He also declined to give a written statement, claiming his Report is ‘an embodiment of his statement’ and all the information he has on the allegations,” the Attorney-General had explained.
But speaking on JoyNews’ Newsfile on Saturday, Edudzi Tamakloe argued that since the AG requested for further investigation into the case of Madam Cecilia Dapaah, same could have been done regarding the illegal mining report.
“How can the Police say they investigated this matter without better conclusion.
“In the Cecilia Dapaah matter, when the Attorney General upon review found that there were loopholes, the Attorney General recommended further investigations.
“If the AG was mindful of getting people prosecuted he would have asked for further investigation but the AG took the Police report, whatever it is and now decided to say that ‘look, Frimpong-Boateng, you never provided us anything’.”
The NDC lawyer stressed that the inaction of the government when it comes to galamsey and the fight against the menace is obvious for all to see.
“If you pick government in totality, their commitment towards this fight is nothing. It is shambolic,” he added.
The Office of the Attorney-General and Ministry of Justice says Prof Frimpong-Boateng’s allegations in his report on illegal mining activities in the country are empty and do not have evidence to prosecute the persons named in it.
It follows the conclusion of its review of a docket submitted by the Police on the allegations contained in a 36-page document written by Prof Frimpong Boateng entitled “Report on the work of IMCIM so far and the way forward”.
The A-G’s advice issued on Tuesday, September 12, and delivered to the Criminal Investigations Department of the Ghana Police Service on Thursday, September 14, which was signed by a Chief State Attorney, Evelyn Keelson, said it cannot recommend prosecution of any of the persons named in the report.
The Attorney-General has thus asked the police to discharge the persons mentioned except those still under investigation.
“The Attorney-General indicates that a careful study of the Report, the various documents and pen drives submitted to the Police did not disclose any evidence in support of the allegations made against the persons cited in the Report, with the exception of Seth Mantey, John Ofori Atta and Ekow Ewusi, in respect of whom the A-G instructs the Police to conclude their investigations and present a report to him.”
“The A-G’s advice, however, notes that even though the Police diary of action shows that John Ofori Atta was invited by the police, there is no indication that he was interviewed or that a statement was taken from him. There is also no statement from Mr Ekow Ewusi on the docket. The A-G instructed the Police to wind up investigations on that issue and furnish him with a report on same.”
credit : myjoyonline.com