Residents of Wassa Togbekrom demonstrate against Golden Star Wassa Ltd for destruction, opportunity denials

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Residents of Wassa Togbekrom in the Wassa East district of the western region numbering about 900 have hit the street of the town to register their frustrations against Golden Star Wassa mine Ltd for allegedly destroying all the farmland and water bodies.

The disgruntled demonstrators also accused the company of denying them employment.

The convenor of the demonstrators, Mr Enoch Obeng explained that their forefathers who migrated from the Volta region to the Eastern Region acquired lands in the Wassa East district where they have been farming for decades.

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In 2013, Golden Star Wassa Mine Ltd came to sign a resettlement and employment memo with the Togbekrom community when the mining company needed the entire land for mining activity.

The people were therefore relocated to Wassa Ateiku because of the health implications of the mining activities.

He added that after the Golden Star Wassa mine Ltd fulfilled the resettlement part of the memo, they refused to fulfil the employment part of it making life unbearable for the residents.

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“This February marks our 10th year of stay here but the job opportunities have been third-party employments; the longest period you can serve is three months.”

He added that because of economic hardship which is as a result of the denial of Golden Star Wassa mine Ltd to offer the people of Wassa Togbekrom employment, most of the youth have turned drunkards in the community so they requested that the mining company should give them 30 slots of a fixed term employments.

“We don’t want the temporal engagement anymore. We want fixed-term employment so we are demanding 30 slots for employment. It is what our hearts will be pleased with.”

Some of the frustrated residents also spoke with Angel News.

“They notify us of employment opportunities and screen us for our health and then they turn around and fail us. We don’t even have potable water here to drink. That is the reason we are demonstrating against them” one of the women (name withheld) said.

“What our forefathers have bestowed to us is what the company has come for so if they are not engaging us in the mine works, surviving becomes very difficult,” Mr Abraham expressed.

Meanwhile, Angel News’ Shadrack Owusu Asante’s efforts to hear Mr. Zacharia Issah who is the Community Affairs Manager of Golden Star Wassa Mines Ltd respond to the claims by the residents has proved futile because he has declined to speak on the matter.

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