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 Sanyang residents chase away mining company
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Momodou



Denmark
9323 Posts

Posted - 24 Jan 2019 :  14:19:02  Show Profile Send Momodou a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Sanyang residents chase away mining company

The Point: Thursday, January 24, 2019


http://thepoint.gm/africa/gambia/article/sanyang-residents-chase-away-mining-company

Sanyang Village Development Committee (VDC) on Monday 21 January 2019 denied a private-owned sand mining company-Unity Mining Company from mining white sand from the shores of the village.


This is the latest episode in the continuing protest by residents against any sand mining activities at this Kombo South settlement. However, the move comes after the said company was alleged to have been engaged in illegal sand mining in the area without any formal agreement with residents.

Reports have it that the said company was issued a licence by Geology Department to engage in sand mining activities in the area called –Howba, which was eventually closed by residents citing some irregularities.

Speaking to The Point, Lamin Bojang, chairman of the VDC, disclosed that there has never been any form of formal agreement between the community and the mining company in question after the end of their first agreement back in 2018.

Bojang acknowledged that natural resources are fully owned and managed by the country, but was quick to add that communities also reserve the right to negotiate with any individual or company that has the interest to engage in any business therein.

“What is more unfortunate is that the company has already mined an area of 700 meters into the community’s territory without even respecting the demarcated boundary between Sanyang, Gunjur and Sambuya. I can tell you that even daily fees collected in illegal mining in the area are not paid to the community; instead to the neighboring village,” he lamented.

Reacting to the latest development, Buba Bojang, manager of the Unity Mining Company informed The Point that he was only put in the picture after the villagers protested against sand mining in the area, by sending away all the sand trucks.

“I don’t know how possible this can happen because there is a task force committee set up with the responsibility of monitoring the communities’ mining borders,” he said. “So what I can say for now is we are going to strictly look into the issue to avoid any unforeseen mining activities,” he added.

Author: Yusupha Jobe

A clear concience fears no accusation - proverb from Sierra Leone

toubab1020



9910 Posts

Posted - 24 Jan 2019 :  16:20:30  Show Profile Send toubab1020 a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I wonder who are the members on this "task force committee" are they government ministers or department heads ? or only local people ?

I am fearful that this new situation could escalate into SERIOUS inter village "problems" ,as is usual in the Gambia the root of the situation is MONEY and where it is ending up,I would be very tly surprised if there is a documented paper trail that could be followed.
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“I don’t know how possible this can happen because there is a task force committee set up with the responsibility of monitoring the communities’ mining borders,” he said. “So what I can say for now is we are going to strictly look into the issue to avoid any unforeseen mining activities,” he added.

"Simple is good" & I strongly dislike politics. You cannot defend the indefensible.

Edited by - toubab1020 on 24 Jan 2019 16:23:35
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toubab1020



9910 Posts

Posted - 24 Jan 2019 :  16:52:37  Show Profile Send toubab1020 a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I am not the only one concerned about sand mining found this EDITORIAL from The Point also dated TODAY.

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Thursday, January 24, 2019

Sand mining in the recent past has become a hot issue in The Gambia. The activity in the recent past resulted in violent confrontation between companies issued with licences and communities affected. In as much as government has right over all land in a country the communities also reserve the rights to stop any illegal activities that could have a negative impact therein.

The most annoying part is that despite the lucrative nature associated with sand mining with construction companies and individual making millions from selling the sand, it is the poor communities that continue to suffer. This situation needs to be looked into. We all know that the practice is very destructive and communities share the brunt of the impact.

Secondly, this awful practice on our beach and dune sand is a direct cause of erosion along many shorelines. It is very damaging to the beach fauna and flora, ruinous to beach aesthetics, and frequently causes environmental damage to other coastal ecosystems associated with the beach such as wetlands.

The government of The Gambia should be aware of the plights of local communities when it comes to farming activities. It is our farmlands that these companies turn into mining site. It is a similar activity that led to the fatal shooting of innocent youths in Faraba Banta last year.

In this new democratic dispensation, communities would always stand up and protest against illegal activities that they believe would have a negative impact on their environment.

Indiscriminate sand mining along the country’s coast has changed the natural flow of the water. Mining by large companies is also negatively impacting the agricultural performance of our communities and the prospects will be gloomy unless timely and prudent rescue measures are made.

We therefore call on the Geology Department and all other stakeholders to rethink before issuing any mining licence (s). This we believe would help a great deal in reducing problems associated with mining activities and save our communities from environmental threats posed by sand mining.

“Nothing is built on stone; all is built on sand, but we must build as if the sand were stone.”

Jorge Luis Borges

http://thepoint.gm/africa/gambia/article/alarming-rate-of-sand-mining

"Simple is good" & I strongly dislike politics. You cannot defend the indefensible.
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