The illegal mining trade has been inundated by Chinese nationals who reportedly offer juicy deals to Ghanaian collaborators to own their lands for this menace.
This illegitimate business, locally called ‘galamsey’, has become a bane of the country with the miners destroying the environment and water bodies and posing dangers to lives.
One of the Chinese galamsey kingpins named Aisha Huang has been arrested and facing prosecution as part of measures to deter the illegal miners.
Speaking on Peace FM’s “Kokrokoo” discussion programme Wednesday morning, Kweku Baako disclosed that the Government of Ghana has since 2005 repatriated fifty thousand (50,000) Chinese nationals but only as few as two or three have been imprisoned in Ghana.
“We have had the [culture] history of repatriating Chinese nationals arrested on the mining site. That is a fact. In fact, since 2005 to date, we have repatriated 50,000 Chinese. Only few have been sent to court and tried and only two or three are in prison. It’s been the policy . . .by the State.”
To him, repatriating the Chinese doesn’t send a strong warning as it would if a severe punishment were meted out to them.
“The Ghana Immigration Service will tell you that the policy is not deportation but repatriation and there are instances. I have the publications here where they arrested about 1,000 and they, themselves, pleaded to be repatriated. It’s called voluntary repatriation. Some will tell you maybe we don’t have the physical structures to contain them in prison and things but punish some. Punishing some sends a certain signal, deterrence,” he said.