……..National Security Council directs CDS
Intelligence information reaching DAYBREAK indicates that following the paper’s expose on corruption within the ranks of Operation Vanguard, there were series of meetings within the various sectors of the security services expressing concern on the nefarious activities of Operation Vanguard crew.
The net effect of that meeting on the security agencies, DAYBREAK learnt was a directive from the National Security Council asking the Chief of Defence Staff (CDS) emphatically to withdraw his men from all mining sites across the country.
In our previous edition, we ran a story on a petition from a police officer within Operation Vanguard lamenting corruption within the leadership of the police-cum-military task force.
In that petition dated January 23, 2020, filed by 34093 D/Sgt David Dzokoto copied to the Commanding Officer of Operation Vanguard, Obuasi and the Chairman, Inter-Ministerial Committee of Illegal Mining, Jubilee House, the police officer, in a litany of embarrassing accusations, fingers Captain Avorxe as the ringleader in the subversive act.
According to the cop, since the arrival of the Task Force at the central FOB, Ayanfuri on 30th December, 2019 at 21:00 hours, ‘’our leadership being headed by Captain Avorxe, has been detailing the men, mostly police to a guard duty at Perseurs Mining Company, a private entity situated at Ayanfuri. My investigations revealed that the company pays an amount of forty five thousand Ghana cedis every two weeks to the command without the knowledge of the personnel performing such duty and such amount has never been accounted for the government of Ghana. Further investigations revealed that, such money is only pocketed by the commander and his cronies’’.
The leadership, additionally, put dampers in the way of disciplinary action within the mandate of the Task Force any time arrests were made.
The ritual then became intimidating the suspects and extorting monies from them.
While the National Security Council letter failed expressly to admit corruption, it said the Council’s view is that the Military should not be deployed perpetually to undertake Civil Police duties, especially, in curbing illegal mining.
In the letter which was tagged RESTRICTED, the National Security Council stated:
“You are directed by the National Security Council to immediately over the next three (3) months withdraw all Military Personnel from the following duties,” namely, Galamstop Activities, Operation Vanguard, and All Mining Sites.
Additionally, the Council also urged the Minister of Interior to instruct the IGP to fill in the vacancies that would be left by the withdrawal of the Military with Police Personnel within Operation Vanguard.
Find below the full petition
PETITION AGAINST AN ILLEGAL DUTY BEEN PERFORMED BY MEN ON VANGUARD DUTY 15 BUT NOT VANGUARD OPERATIONAL DUTIES
Sir, I am humbly petitioning your office about an illegal duty that we the men who were deployed by the government of Ghana to stop the illegal mining activities within part of the country.
Since our arrival at the central FOB, Ayanfuri on 30th December, 2019 at 21:00 hours, our leadership been headed by Captain Avorxe, has been detailing the men, mostly police to a guard duty at Perseurs Mining Company, a private entity situated at Ayanfuri. My investigations revealed that the company pays an amount of forty five thousand Ghana cedis every two weeks to the command without the knowledge of the personnel performing such duty and such amount has never been accounted for the government of Ghana. Further investigations revealed that, such money is only pocketed by the commander and his cronies.
Sir, since the duties started from day one, including patrol duties, it has been established that some parts of the central region has been allocated to the commander and some of the senior military officers as a concessions which they don’t allow an arrest to be effected there. Whenever men goes there to perform legally sanctioned duty by the government, the military officers in charge of such term always obstruct men on duty that “O.C instructed that we should not arrest them”. Meaning that such places are for him or he has collected money from the illegal miners. And this has been happening since vanguard fifteen started at the central FOB.
Just behind the camp that houses the men at central FOB, there has been sounds of machines suspected to be that of chanfans-a machine used by illegal miners for mining, so been an investigator, I went to find out and to my outer dismay, I met over hundred people with twenty five chanfans working in an illegal mining pit and when I confronted them, one FiFi who claimed to be their leader informed me that they have been paying an amount of five hundred Ghana cedis per machine, totaling twelve thousand and five five hundred cedis weekly to the commander. I informed my senior officers about it and as at now, the illegal mining is ongoing there, just in the nose of the vanguard personnel been headed by Captain Avorxe who instructed earlier that no personnel should affect any arrest without his instruction, hence the continuation of the illegality as the command has been collecting money from the illegal miners.
Sir, some of us are not comfortable with such happenings as it is tantamount to financial loss to the state and abetment of crime to wit illegal mining so I want to draw this to your attention.
The Officer Commanding
Chairman: Inter Ministerial Committee On Illegal Mining