The Asantehene, Otumfuo Osei Tutu II, says the Ashanti Regional Minister, Simon Osei-Mensah and the Minister for Lands and Natural Resources, Samuel Abu Jinapor, asked him to stick to his speech during a Regional Consultative Dialogue on Small-Scale Mining in the Ashanti Region.
According to him, they thought he would say something controversial if he swayed from the dialogue, where he challenged stakeholders to be truthful in the fight against illegal small-scale mining in the country.
Speaking at the event, the Asantehene said he told the politicians in plain words that about 30 percent of them know people who are into illegal mining in the region.
He asked the stakeholders to be truthful to themselves in the galamsey fight, especially chiefs who have sold out lands to the galamseyers to mine illegally.
Before he read the speech, the king asked for a minute to say his mind before proceeding to read the official speech that was handed over to him.
The truth is I told them about 30 percent of us know those who are doing the galamsey. If we would say the truth. We know those who are doing it; If we don’t say the truth, we will lie to ourselves and be organising conferences such as this.
One person who is into it said it plainly that the lands were given to them by the chiefs. If you are a chief and you have done such you have to judge yourself knowing that you have done wrong. If you have done such then what kind of chief are you? It is a sin. [SIC]
He said he wouldn’t say much about the menace because it might bring up issues.
If I am to talk, I would say many things that might bring issues so I would keep it short, he said before he continued with the written speech.