Dr Papa Kwesi Nduom, Presidential Candidate of the Progressive People’s Party (PPP), has decried the unwillingness of government to stop the exploitation of the country’s natural resources by foreign nationals.
He has, thus, vowed to rid the country of all Chinese nationals engaged in illegal mining and retail business when voted into power.
Addressing the party’s supporters at Obuasi in Ashanti Region during his regional tour at the weekend, Dr Nduom bemoaned the spate at which lands were being degraded in the name of small-scale mining.
“It is unfortunate the New Patriotic Party and the National Democratic Congress have not had the political will to stamp authority on fraudulent gold trade which has been on the upsurge these days.
“Not only do these illegal gold dealers destroy the environment through illegal mining, popularly called galamsey, they also make huge returns from their operations.
“The business has become so lucrative that foreign nationals, including Chinese, have ventured into it and are recklessly destroying the environment,” he said.
Dr Nduom said a PPP government would crack-down on and institute stricter immigration laws to limit the influx of illegal immigrants, and that the party would not countenance the indifferent and arrogant posturing of these immigrants.
“I worry over complaints from the Ghana Union of Traders Association that many Chinese investors are involved in petty trading and therefore kick the local traders out of business,” he said.
Dr Nduom said even though Chinese companies had helped to diversify the Ghanaian economy, contributed to local tax revenue and job creation, they must not be allowed to cause suffering to the masses of this country.
“Just as a Ghanaian cannot get up and go to China to engage in illegal mining and petty trading so should it be impossible for a Chinese national to come to Ghana to do same,” he said.
Dr Nduom said Ghana would take advantage of the tri-lateral cooperation mechanism and push the political and economic relationship further.
“Through our joint efforts, I firmly believe that China and Ghana’s economic cooperation will be much closer, our people will understand each other better, and the friendship between our two countries will be stronger,” Dr Nduom said.
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