[dropcap]T[/dropcap]he government of Ghana has cancelled Emergency Visa or Arrival Visa for Chinese nationals as part of the fight against illegal Mining.
Emergency Visa Policy was introduced by the Ghana Immigration Service to cater for visitors/business people who travel at short notice from countries where Ghana has no mission or consulate.
The policy authorizes visas to be granted on arrival at the airport or other entry points subject to specific Immigration requirements. This policy has been abused with many Chinese nationals taking advantage to come to Ghana to engage in galamsey.
However, according to the Minister of Chieftaincy and Religious Affairs, Kofi Dzamesi, this arrival Visa privilege for Chinese have been cancelled.
“The Chinese nationals come to the country to engage in galamsey, they defecate into our rivers and pollute our river through illegal mining,” Mr. Dzamesi noted.
He continued: “But now, the Arrival Visa which the former government granted the Chinese have been cancelled. So if you are a Chinese and come to Ghana without Visa, you will go back to your China land.”
“After all, when we go to China, they don’t give us arrival Visa so why should we (country) give them arrival Visa, so, that arrival Visa has been cancelled. Any Chinese who wants to come to Ghana should go to Beijing, Ghana’s Embassy to apply for Visa so that we scrutinize why that person wants to come to Ghana,” the minister said at a durbar organized for chiefs in galamsey-proned areas at Kwahu Mpraeso Traditional Council in the Eastern Region.
He said government is bent on fighting galamsey or illegal mining, adding a team of trained Navy officers will also be dispatched to patrol on all the river bodies in the country.
According to him, priority will be given to areas where illegal mining is rampant when it comes to the implementation of the One District, One Factory programme to create jobs for the youth.
He noted the youth, especially those in illegal mining will be trained to use the right mechanisms in mining.