The governments of Ghana and Ivory Coast have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU), with an eye on addressing the menace of the polluting water bodies through illegal mining activities (galamsey).

Ministers of both countries met in Accra on Thursday, June 29, to discuss the way forward.

The Bia and Tano rivers in the Western Region directly flow into other lagoons in Ivory Coast, hence the pollution of the aforementioned rivers mean the the country is also affected.

The MoU had both recommendations and timelines which are expected to guide both countries in the fight against illegal small scale mining, otherwise known in Ghana as galamsey.

Speaking on behalf of Ghana’s delegation, Minister of Environment, Science, Technology and Innovation, Professor Kwabena Frimpong-Boateng said the Akufo-Addo led government will do its best to make sure illegal mining activities are stopped.

He added that both countries must collaborate to tackle the canker, while urging patience with all stakeholders involved.

This, he said, will help maintain the cordial relationship that exists between both West African countries.

Ivory Coast’s Minister of Industry and Mines, Mr Jean-Claude Bron, also expressed confidence that the recommendations in the MoU will be implemented successfully.

In his view, both countries owe it a duty to “put our efforts together to help eradicate the illegal mining that had polluted our water bodies and solve the burden of our peoples.”

The meeting was held in Accra under the auspices of Ghana’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration, with a high powered ministerial delegation representing both Ghana and Ivory Coast.