It is turning out that the 20 persons arrested at Akyem Akanteng in the West Akyem Municipality of the Eastern Region for alleged illegal mining activities were sent there on the instructions of George Asante, the personal assistant to the National Security Coordinator, Major General Adu Amanfo.
DAYBREAK has also gathered that residents of Akyem Akanteng also killed two of the so-called national security operatives who had entered the Akanteng Forest Reserve to conduct illegal mining activities.
How a personal assistant to the National Security Coordinator can send people on operations with five vehicles and weapons tells how the nation’s spy agency is in chaos.
Again, Major General Adu Amanfo since taking over in February this year has sacked everyone who worked with the late Joshua Kyeremeh.
George Asante and his boys have all been remanded by the National Intelligence Bureau (NIB) and are due to be arraigned before court.
In less than ten days, in separate operations, the Eastern Regional Police Command arrested 65 persons, some alleged to be National Security operatives engaging in illegal mining, popularly known as galamsey, in the region.
The arrested persons were picked up from illegal mining sites, with some of them in military and police fatigues at the time of their arrests.
The Asamankese Divisional Police Commander, ACP Kankam Boadu, confirmed that they had intelligence that some National Security personnel had been accosted at the Akyem Akanteng chief’s palace in the Lower West Akim Municipality.
“We rushed there and they handed over to us the men who claim to be National Security personnel and three illegal miners. Our interim investigation indicates that the National Security personnel came there to mine for gold that is why the town’s folks arrested them. We rearrested them and sent them to the Regional Police Command to continue with their investigation,” he said.
Kwabena Adu-Bonnah, an official from the Forestry Commission (FC), also confirmed the arrests saying “last week, we arrested some and this week we arrested a total of 28 from some galamsey sites in the region. They have all been handed over to the police for further action.”
He said that 19 persons who claimed to be National Security operatives were apprehended by the police for illegally mining gold in the Atewa Forest Reserve last Tuesday.
The suspects, who were wearing military uniforms, invaded the reserve from Akyem-Akanteng onboard a Toyota Land Cruiser V8 with sophisticated rifles on Tuesday dawn under the guise of clamping down on illegal mining.
They reportedly clashed with angry residents and forest guards who had vowed to resist illegal miners.
In the ensuing melee, the residents reportedly deflated the tires of the five vehicles they used for the operation and also vandalized some of them.
The damaged vehicles included a Tundra with registration number NR 9706-20, Toyota Hilux with registration number GT 9683-14, and Nissan Patrol with registration number GW 1966-12, and two other unregistered land cruisers.