Illegal gold mining: Ghana arrests 46 foreigners

2013-10-31 16:24


Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Accra - Ghana has arrested 46 more foreigners suspected of illegal gold mining in the last week, including 43 Chinese, two Indians and an American, an immigration official told AFP Thursday.

The latest raid in the crackdown on illicit gold mining in the central region, which included gunfire but no injuries, raises the number of those arrested to more than 600 since June, mostly people from China.

More than 4 500 Chinese nationals, including those arrested, have left the west African nation since the authorities began enforcing a law that bars foreign nationals from engaging in small-scale mining.

Many left voluntarily after the crackdown was launched.

Regarding the latest arrests, it "seems that all these people were engaged in small scale mining", said Francis Palmdeti, spokesperson for the Ghana Immigration Service.

Palmdeti, who provided the citizenship breakdown of those detained in the last seven days, said the American involved was of "Indian origin," and that this was the first US national arrested in the crackdown.

The US embassy in Accra was not immediately available to comment.

Ghana is the continent's second-largest gold producer after South Africa.

Chinese nationals, but also Africans, Russians and others had flocked to the country's central region in search of the precious mineral.

President John Dramani Mahama in June sent a taskforce to the area made up of immigration officials, police and military to clear out the unauthorised foreign miners.

In recent weeks, the foreigners who have stayed have taken to staying in guesthouses or hiding in the countryside, only travelling to their work sites at night, said Palmdeti.

He confirmed that the security forces fired weapons in making the latest arrests, but said no one was hurt.

After an investigation, Ghanaian authorities will decide whether to prosecute or deport those picked up in the sweep.

Read more on:    ghana  |  west africa

Join the conversation! encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions. publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24


Book flights

Compare, Book, Fly

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.