Ghanaian News

Give us land for small-scale mining – UMaT VC to govt

New Vice-Chancellor of the University of Mines and Technology (UMaT) at Tarkwa in the Western Region Professor Richard Kwesi Amankwah has made a request to the Minister of Lands and Natural Resources that the university is given a piece of mineralised land for it to start the UMaT Small Scale Mines.

“In UMaT, we do not only teach but we also practise what we preach. We are therefore making a request to the Minister of Lands and Natural Resources to give us a piece of mineralised land for us to start the UMaT Small Scale Mine.”

He assured the University will strive to make the venture grow to become a model mine and centre for training artisanal and small-scale miners in the sub-region with best practices in resource optimization and environmental sustainability.

Prof Amankwah made the request at a ceremony to induct him into office as the third Vice-Chancellor of UMaT.

He takes over from Professor Jerry Yao Kumah, who has completed his term.

Prof Amankwah is a 54-year-old distinguished and internationally acclaimed scholar and business-oriented academician who has provided many years of dedicated services to the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST) and UMaT.

He obtained his PhD at the Queen’s University, Canada in 2005.

Until his current appointment, Prof Amankwah was the Dean of the Faculty of Integrated Management Sciences at UMaT.

He has authored 120 academic publications on journals, conference proceedings and more than a hundred technical reports.

Outlining his vision, Prof Amankwah mentioned deepening scholarship, innovation and entrepreneurship at UMaT to drive sustainable industrial development.

“Among my vision is also the UMaT Mines which apart from the potential financial results, environmental and resource optimization, will also create a practical avenue for industrial training for our students and create employment for our graduates.”

Special Guest of Honour was Senior Minister Yaw Osafo Marfo, who urged the new VC to build on the successes chalked by linking their research to addressing the challenges confronting the nation.

“One major area of concern for the government is small-scale mining which is mostly associated with galamsey. When you think of what happens to our land through galamsey, you will shiver…it is destructive to our forest, to our farmlands and to our environment. I would like to encourage UMaT to help develop the skills and techniques of the industry to transform small-scale mining to realise the huge potentials to help contribute to the development of the economy.”

He further said: “We have been endowed with gold deposits at almost every part of this country and therefore we should at the small scale level try to discover the technics to enable small-scale mining to thrive without destruction. This university should owe it as a duty to do deeper research into small-scale mining so that our young men can practise it, earn a good living and not destroy the environment.”

The immediate past VC, Profession Jerry Kumah commended the university community for the support during his tenure and asked for the same support for his successor.

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