GH¢3.15 million meant to compensate communities affected by the cyanide spillage into the Yaakye stream that served as a source of drinking water is yet to be utilised since 2012 when the money was released.
The Newmont Ghana Ahafo Mine that caused the spillage had to pay the compensation to the affected communities after the incident.
The Asutifi North Assembly and traditional authorities of the affected towns – Kenyasi No. 1 & 2 and Ntotrosoin in the Brong Ahafo Region – have for the past two years been litigating over the type of project to use the money for.
As a result of this protracted litigation, the money has not been put to any use.
The community members want the money to be used to upgrade a Health Centre at Kenyasi No. 1 to the status of a district hospital, while the Assembly is proposing the construction of a market centre and a lorry park, a decision that has been kicked against by the people because they think the hospital will serve them far better than a market and a lorry station.
According to them, existing market centres in the district have become white- elephants, therefore it is pointless to build an additional one.
The traditional authorities had earlier requested for an amicable settlement of the matter, which the parties agreed to. However, after months of deliberations, they gave failed to reach a consensus.
The money is a fraction of the GH¢7million penalty Newmont Ghana Gold Limited (NGGL) was made to pay for spilling cyanide into a stream.
The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) then received GH¢2.8 million out of the amount while the Inspectorate Division of the Minerals Commission took GH¢1.05 million.