Increase our share of Minerals Development Fund – UMAT appeals to gov’t

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The George Grant University of Mines and Technology at Tarkwa in the Western Region, is requesting an upward review of its share of the Minerals Development Fund to enable it carry out some projects and conduct research.

Currently, the school needs over 4 million cedis to complete some abandoned legacy projects.

Making a case for the school, its Vice Chancellor, Prof. Jerry Samuel Yaw Kuma, said the distribution quota for the school should be reviewed to ensure balance.

“The disbursement plan was skewed so much away from research and development. And we were not too happy with it so we have written a document proposing that when the Act comes for review, it should be looked at in a way that research, development and training will be given the necessary concentration. As we speak, only 5 percent of the disbursement has been earmarked for sustainable research into mining and its allied areas”

Your demands will be considered – Lands minister 

The Lands Minister and Natural Resources Minister, Asomah Cheremeh, said his ministry may consider an upward adjustment of the school’s quota under the fund.

“Before the previous administration left office, it told us that meat on the bone is finished. It is left with the bone. So every Ghanaian is aware that we are now struggling to put some meat on the bone and that is not easy. That may account for why these monies have not been paid for.”

“Any material time that funds are made available, we will make sure that all these debts are settled. The revision of the Act that gives 3 percent, if it is revisited we will see and beef up your percentage, he added.

30 percent gold retention policy achievable – Gov’t

Government says the thirty percent gold retention policy christened the National Assay Programme is achievable.

The Lands and Natural Resources Minister, Kweku Asomah-Cheremeh, who is on a working visit to some mining companies including the AngloGold Ashanti Iduapriem Mines in Tarkwa, said collaborative meetings are being held to reach a consensus on the implementation of the policy.

It is estimated that 90 percent of the gold mined in the country is exported without value addition.

Ghana stands to reap greater benefits in the mining sector than it is currently getting from relying on royalties and corporate taxes, if the country’s local content policy is fully implemented.

The Local Content and Local Participation Bill 2013, which was passed in November 2013, specifies that Ghanaians should be prioritized in terms of employment in the petroleum and extractive industries, and should benefit from the country’s resources.

ABOUT: Ellsamwise King

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