The Ashanti Regional Chairman of the New Patriotic Party (NPP), Bernard Antwi Boasiako, alias Wontumi, has told party members that he is back in business as a gold miner in what has been described as illegal mining or “galamsey” after his excavators and other mining equipment seized last year were released to him.
In a leaked recording from his meeting with Executives of his party, Wontumi is captured explaining that he had to pay $1million before his own party would allow him back to his mining site.
“…I had my excavators seized last year and not a single excavator was given to me. No one could even ask me to return to my site. I’ve been able to renew my license just 3 weeks ago after paying one million dollars($1million) and intend to go back to the site anytime soon,” Wontumi is heard in the audio as saying while delegates cheer him up.
In what appears to be a campaign rant, Wontumi also uses the opportunity to promise that he will use proceeds from his controversial mining activities to help delegates if they retain him as Chairman of the NPP in the Ashanti Region.
“Because that’s the only means through which I’m able to take care of people in the region. I was denied access to work until I paid. Yet people keep claiming that Wontumi has gotten contracts,’’ he said.
The audio which had been secretly captured only rehashes the fact that the Akufo-Addo government has failed to fight illegal mining because members of the governing are the most steeped in galamsey operations.
An inter-ministerial committee that was set up to serve as the brains for a campaign to fight the canker crumbled from the inside out with members such as its Chairman, Professor Kwabena Frimpong Boateng caught on tape discussing the allocation of illegal mining fields to party people so they can raise money to help the party.