Newmont Ghana has called for calm following violent clashes between angry residents of New Abirem in Ghana’s Eastern Region and police personnel over the miner’s operations.
On Tuesday violent clashes between the angry residents, mostly farmers who are seeking new and additional land and crop compensation and police deployed to ensure security and public order while protecting lives and property, left several people injured.
But the company in a statement called for calm and said it was committed to transparent engagements with local communities to improve lives and collaboratively identifying solutions to mitigate impacts from its operations.
“Newmont’s sustainability approach involves building and maintaining respectful relationships with our host communities. This means a strong commitment to direct, good-faith dialogue, while ensuring compliance with all relevant national laws, regulations, and international best practices,” said Joep Coenen, General Manager – Akyem Mine which cover the New Abirem area.
The statement also urged the aggrieved residents to, among other things, allow the legal process to run its course following earlier mediation efforts.
“As a responsible company, we have consistently met our legal obligations to our stakeholders since we began operations at Akyem and we will continue to do so.
“As this case is currently before the courts, we urge any protesters to let the case run its course through the judicial system,” Mr. Coenen added.
In July, the community group embarked on a similar demonstration against Newmont Ghana to express dissatisfaction with the ongoing legal process concerning their demands for land and crop compensation and employment, as well as allegations of building cracks from mine pit blasting.
Prior to this, the Company had been in mediation with the farmers led by an independent arbitrator. The parties continued to engage on the matter through the mediation process until the case was referred back to court. Newmont Ghana will continue to focus on engaging with stakeholders to address their needs and concerns, fairly, respectfully and responsibly.
“We will continue transparent and respectful engagement with our stakeholders, including the farmers, Stool Land Owners and District Security Committee (DISEC) as we work towards resolving this issue amicably,” he concluded.