Make the Birim River drinkable again in your life time
#stopGalamsey Photo Library
The Christian Council of Ghana(CCG) has charged President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo to make the Birim river and other heavily polluted water bodies in the country drinkable in his life time.
General Secretary, Rev. Dr. Kwabena Opuni-Frimpong said the President must institute immediate measures to curtail illegal mining, also known as Galamsey, which has degraded vast portions of our lands and rendered almost all the major water bodies polluted with deadly chemicals such as cyanide and mercury.
In a message to the Salvation Congregation of the Presbyterian Church of Ghana, New Achimota, Accra, the CCG General Secretary regretted allegation that some traditional leaders and high profile politicians, with the responsibility of holding the nation in trust for the future generation, have fronted and participated in illegal mining activities, which have destroyed the very land they have sworn to protect.
Ghana is currently grappling with the devastating effects of illegal mining on farmlands and in water bodies. The use of carcinogenic poisons such as mercury and cyanide has rendered the waters unusable by communities along the banks that relied on them for fresh water. The Ghana Water Company has said it is becoming increasingly difficult to treat water from these polluted sources for public consumption. Experts have also warned that the rampant pollution could result in Ghana having to import water from neighbouring countries in the near future if the situation is not arrested.
Rev Dr. Opuni-Frimpong recalled the days when Birim river, which rises in the Atewa range of the Eastern region, was so pure and clean, natives could drink directly from it without treatment. Other rivers, the Tano, Pra, Ankobra were tourist attractions and the pride of the country. Today however they have become a sea of dark brown water, harbouring dangerous chemicals. Communities along the banks have been deprived of water for farming and domestic use.
According to the CCG General Secretary, illegal mining has also destroyed vast amounts of Cocoa lands and robbed farmers of their livelihoods. It threatens as well to derail the Country’s target of increasing production of the cash crop to earn more foreign exchange.
Rev Dr. Opuni-Frimpong pledged the Christian Council’s Commitment to the media campaign against illegal mining. He called on all religious institutions to join the cause, and warned the church that they risked having to import water for even baptism, if the situation continues.
He charged the President, Nana Akufo-Addo to gather the political will to fight illegal mining and restore our polluted water bodies and degraded lands in his lifetime, as one of his legacies to the nation.
The visit to the Salvation Congregation of the Presbyterian Church of Ghana, New Achimota, Accra, was part of the Council’s outreach program to bring the people of the Member Churches closer to its activities.
April 10, 2017
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