CSOs make informed inputs into new minerals, mining policy

Civil Society Organisations (CSOs) in the extractive sector, the Ghana Anti-Corruption Coalition and other organisations are preparing to submit a memorandum of recommendations to the Minerals Commission for incorporation into Ghana’s revised minerals and mining policy.

The submissions, they are confident will improve on both the previous and new minerals and mining policies, ensure better governance and management of revenues from the exploitation of the minerals, especially the new ‘oil,’ – the critical minerals.

This comes after intensive brainstorming sessions on the draft policy at a dialogue organised by the Natural Resource Governance Institute (NRGI) and the Minerals Commission (MINCOM).

The dialogue was aimed at pooling various non-state actors from civil society, and media to review and provide inputs into the draft mining policy, ensuring that mining activities in Ghana are both beneficial and sustainable, balancing economic development with environmental and social concerns.

Participants at the dialogue identified gaps and areas for improvement in the draft policy and made presentations of the observations to MINCOM.

Africa Director at the Natural Resource Governance Institute (NRGI), Nafi Chinery, expressed hope that the latest pronouncements by high-level public officials will translate into concrete actions, unlike in the past where implementation has been a significant challenge. She noted that despite numerous engagements and inputs from civil society and the media, the government’s response has been slow due to various reasons.

 ‘As civil society, our role is to intensify our oversight to ensure effective implementation and compliance. We hope that all the agreed points and inputs from CSOs in this crucial discussion will be incorporated into the draft minerals policy to enhance governance in our mining policy. As CSOs, and beyond this convening, we will submit a formal memo to the Minerals Commission, outlining all key points, which will serve as a record of our input into the policy and enable us to monitor progress and action by government on the policy,”

Executive Secretary of the GACC, Beauty Emefa Nartey maintained that the Coalition’s expectation from the revised minerals and mining policy is to see some enhancement in terms of issues surrounding transparency and accountability.  According to her, the new mining policy should lean more towards proactive disclosures since “when it comes to mining, the challenge is accessing contracts signed between government and the investor.”

Deputy Sector Director, Mining, Africa, Department for Business & Trade at the British High Commission in Accra, Ebenezer Sackitey Nyako stated that “collaboration with international partners and enhancing international markets to make them more responsive, transparent and responsible through the UK’s Critical Mineral Strategy remains a priority to the UK. We are optimistic that the Foreign Commonwealth and Development Office funded support to the Natural Resource Governance Institute’s Emerge Project will shape informed inputs to Ghana’s draft Mining Policy. Together, we are partnering to promote economic development by ensuring benefit to citizens, environment and energy transition.”

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