President John Mahama has described as a national security threat, the illegal mining menace in Ghana.
President Mahama said the recent spate of killings associated with illegal mining (galamsey), has the tendency to breed lawlessness.
Two local miners in Obuasi were recently shot and killed by rival Chinese illegal miners on May 9, 2013.
Local communities have also, in the past, engaged Chinese miners in several brutal shows of force, using guns and other crude weapons.
Additionally, scores of illegal local miners have been killed by mine pits which caved in on them accidentally.
The most recent accident involved 17 illegal miners who were buried alive on April 15, 2013 and killed instantly at Kyekyewere near Dunkwa-On-Offin in the Central Region.
At the inauguration of an inter-ministerial taskforce on illegal mining at the Flagstaff House on Tuesday May 14, 2013, President Mahama said it was important that the illegal mining menace is checked to safeguard the country’s national security.