On Wednesday, June 5, 2024, Hon. Samuel A. Jinapor, MP, the Minister for Lands and Natural Resources, commissioned an ultra-modern office complex at Akim Oda for the Minerals Commission to aid the commission’s monitoring and regulatory duties in the Birim Central Municipality and the Eastern Region.

Speaking at the inauguration ceremony, the Lands Minister disclosed that constructing a well-equipped office is part of the government’s agenda to decentralize and bring the operations of the Minerals Commission closer to mining operators and communities.

Detailing the history and significance of the Akim Oda office, Hon. Jinapor revealed that it is one of the first offices established in the country.

He stated that the construction of a modern office for the Akim-Oda Minerals Commission is further evidence of the Akufo-Addo administration’s commitment to revitalizing the mining sector by promoting sustainable and environmentally sound mining practices.

He noted that the office would enable the Minerals Commission to conduct effective supervision in Akim Oda and its surrounding areas.

The Minister announced that under the Akufo-Addo administration, the operations of the Minerals Commission have expanded significantly, with the construction of four new district offices, 12 satellite offices, and two observatory offices.

“In addition to overseeing small-scale mining operations in Akim Oda, this office will supervise mining activities in Akwatia, Anyinam, Osinor, Asamantafo, Kade, Adankrono, among others. These areas have a long history of community mining. I am pleased that we have been able to construct this multi-purpose edifice for the people of Akim Oda.

“I am informed that the construction has been completed to standard, and measures have been put in place to ensure that the office is properly maintained for effective service delivery,” he said.

Hon. A. Jinapor sent the gathering into complete elation when he announced the imminent launch of the Community Mining Scheme in Akim Oda, stating that the construction of the office has paved the way for the creation of a CMS concession.

He acknowledged the Member of Parliament for Akim Oda, Alexandre Kwasi Aquah, for his assertive role in realizing the offices and CMS and promised that the concession would be announced soon.

“With this fully furnished office commissioned, I want to assure you that Akim Oda will soon have a community mining scheme. The MP has been persistent, and I am here to announce that Akim Oda will soon benefit from a Community Mining Scheme. This office will definitely monitor the operations of the Community Mining Scheme.”

Hon. Barbara Oteng Gyasi, the Chairperson of the Minerals Commission Board, stated, “We were tasked by the president to regularize mining to benefit every Ghanaian and protect our environment. To achieve that, we had to expand our offices across the country to be closer to the mining companies, especially the small-scale mining companies, to effectively monitor their activities.

The Minerals Commission undertook an expansion project to increase our district, regional, and satellite officers across the country. We recognize that the Eastern Region is critical in our mining footprint, and to effectively monitor all activities, we must ensure that Minerals Commission offices are present in many areas of the Eastern Region.”

Oseadieyo Dr. Frimpong Manso IV, the Paramount Chief of the Akyem Kotoku Traditional Area, expressed his delight at the impending arrival of the Community Mining Scheme and praised the Lands Minister for fulfilling the requests of the MP and the residents.

He emphasized that mining has been a key economic activity for the residents and committed himself to ensuring adherence to the country’s mining regulations.

The two-story office, which began construction in 2022, is estimated to cost GH¢5 million. The office complex features four washrooms, two large storerooms, a kitchen on each floor, a conference hall, and other amenities that will improve the welfare of the staff and enable them to discharge their duties with utmost perfection.