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BusinessCDD-Ghana advocates for a rise in mineral royalty disbursements to mining districts

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CDD-Ghana advocates for a rise in mineral royalty disbursements to mining districts

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The Center for Democratic Development (CDD-Ghana) has restated its call for an increase in mineral royalties allocated to mining districts.

Despite Ghana’s abundant resources, communities where minerals are extracted are notably underdeveloped.

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According to Emmanuel Yeboah, a Research Analyst at CDD-Ghana, the current allocation of mineral royalties to mining communities is insufficient, leading to development gaps.

Speaking at a stakeholders’ meeting in Obuasi to review the CDD report on the Mining Districts Development Scorecard, Mr. Yeboah noted that the 20 percent royalties paid, combined with delays in fund disbursement, hindered meaningful development projects in affected districts.

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He urged the Government, the Ministry of Lands and Natural Resources, the Minerals Commission, the Ghana Revenue Authority, and other stakeholders to consider increasing the share of mineral royalties allocated to these districts to address the development disparities in mining communities.

According to the CDD, the Obuasi Municipal ranked sixth in the latest 2023 Mining District Development Scorecard (MDDS) league table, scoring 35.4 out of 100 points, below the MDDS overall score of 38.4 points.

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This indicates significant governance issues in the Municipality’s management and utilization of mineral royalties.

The Mining District Development Scorecard, supported by the Ford Foundation, aims to monitor mineral revenue utilization in mining districts in Ghana, promoting transparency, accountability, and better social and human development outcomes.

The project seeks to empower communities and enhance their involvement in natural resource governance for improved sub-national development in Ghana.

Obuasi’s score was only higher than Asutifi North District and Prestea-Huni Valley Municipal in the MDDS ranking.

Mr. Yeboah highlighted that the Municipality performed poorly in two key MDDS areas: the effectiveness of local management committees and the efficiency of mineral development fund utilization.

He said, “across all the five major components of the MDDS, the Obuasi Municipal scored an average of ‘ very good’ in 10 out of 12 subcomponents that were assessed and scored using administrative data sources prepared by the Assembly.”

He further noted that the study identified inadequate fiscal transparency as one of the obstacles facing the Assembly and the local mining committee.

Dr. Amina Achiaa Asiedu Amoah, Chairperson of the Local Mining Committee of the Obuasi Municipality, assured that the committee would enhance its efforts to raise awareness among the public regarding its activities.

She also advocated for an increase in mineral royalties allocated to the districts to accelerate development in mining communities and fund the operations of the LMC, including public outreach programs.

Mr. Ali Tanti Robert, Executive Director of the Center for Social Impact Studies, urged the Obuasi Municipal Assembly to expand its public engagement initiatives to provide an account of the utilization of mineral royalties to the public.

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