Odumase (Ash), Nov 17, GNA – The unrestrained destruction of the environment through illegal gold mining dominated an election debate held for candidates contesting next month’s parliamentary polls in the Asante-Akim Central Constituency.
Mr. Patrick Ofosu of the Convention People’s Party (CPP), Mr. Godwin Denteh, Progressive People’s Party (PPP) and Nana Afrifa Yamoah of the governing National Democratic Congress (NDC), pledged to work hard to stop the degradation of the forest and pollution of rivers and streams running through the area.
The programme was put together by the National Commission for Civic Education (NCCE) to provide the opportunity for the candidates to tell the people, what they would be doing to bring progress to them.
Funded by the European Union (EU), it attracted a huge crowd of political party supporters, civil society organizations, the police and religious leaders.
The three were unanimous in their position that the havoc being wreaked on the environment could not continue.
Mr. Denteh said he would do everything to make sure that the mining regulations were enforced, if elected by the people.
Additionally, miners would be assisted to adopt modern mining technology, to conform to safety standards.
Mr. Ofosu told the voters that he would lead a campaign to abolish alluvial mining.
On his part, Nana Yamoah promised to get mining companies in the area to give out part of their concession to small-scale miners.
The Municipal Director of the NCCE, Mr. Paul Oppong, said the goal was to aid voters to make the right decision on voting day.
He applauded the candidates and their supporters for the political maturity they put on show – the tolerance and responsible conduct, throughout the debate.
Incumbent New Patriotic Party (NPP) Member of Parliament (MP), Mr. Kwame Anyimadu Antwi, who is seeking re-election, failed to participate in the debate.