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EPA To Become an Authority

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) will soon become an Authority with the requisite powers to safeguard the biophysical nature of the environment and prosecute offenders.

The Executive Director of the EPA, Mr Henry Kwabena Kokofu made this known during a meeting with the National House of Chiefs chaired by Nana Ogyeahoho Yaw Gyebi, the Paramount Chief of Sefwi Anhwiaso traditional area on Thursday, January 25, 2024, in Kumasi.

He relayed that the EPA Act 1994, which established the Agency is currently under review.

“Act 490 of 1994 that brought into being EPA and its enabling legislation LI 1652, the Environmental Assessment of 1999 are being looked at critically and seriously. I’m happy at this point to let Nana President and members here know that…the President of the Republic through the cabinet has approved the complete overhauling of the EPA Act.”

The Amendment is expected to be passed as soon as Parliament resumes in February, he said, adding that it is before Parliament under a certificate of urgency.

This will change the name of the Agency to Environment Protection Authority and give officials there the requisite powers to arrest offenders and prosecute them, enabling them to strictly deal with illegal mining, Mr Kokofu assured.

He also asserted that illegal mining has gained prominence and proven difficult to fight due to failure to take full steps of regulating the extraction industry.

The meeting was held to solicit the views of the traditional authorities in the fight against illegal mining known as galamsey.

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