We should not be blamed for Galamsey – Chinese Ambassador to Ghana

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The Chinese Ambassador to Ghana, Shi Ting Wang, has asked Ghanaians not to blame his compatriots for the upsurge in illegal mining in the country, with its attendant pollution of water bodies.

According to him, no Chinese national has any knowledge of the location of Ghana’s gold reserve and that those involved in illegal mining activities, popularly known as galamsey, were introduced to it by some unpatriotic Ghanaians.

“Chinese people don’t control your mining; we are not the holders. Chinese people don’t know where the gold is. If you don’t issue visas to Chinese people they can’t enter your country. They don’t know where there is mining,” he told a forum recently.

[Galamsey: Four Chinese, National security operatives arrested; weapons, ammunitions seized]

The Chinese Ambassador made the observations in a response to questions on the involvement of some Chinese nationals in the illegal mining in the country during a lecture organised by the Confucius Institute at the University of Cape Coast.

Ambassador Shi Ting asked rhetorically, “How could we be able to do galamsey in your country, why?” and added, “Ghanaians needed to succinctly answer these questions before they shift the blame on the Chinese.”

He believed his compatriots were involved in galamsey with the help of Ghanaians, particularly those living in the mining communities.

[Ghana has lost at least 5,000 hectares of cocoa farms to galamsey]

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Last year, the Chinese Ambassador expressed similar sentiments when he pledged the Chinese government’s support to the nation’s fight against the galamsey menace.

He expressed surprise about how some Chinese nationals, who were arrested for their involvement in galamsey, were released and repatriated to China without the knowledge of the embassy.

Mr. Wang therefore called on Ghanaians not to aid foreigners, especially Chinese nationals to engage in illegal mining activities so as not to derail efforts to nip in the bud galamsey activities.

“We don’t know where your gold is. We don’t issue visas too for the Chinese people coming to Ghana. Ghanaians issue the visas. Ghanaians aid the Chinese to where they can find your gold. Why are Chinese not doing illegal mining in South Africa where there is also a lot of gold?” he queried.

By Environmental Desk