Court grants out of court settlement for Newmont

A Sunyani High Court presided over by Justice Douglas Seidu has granted an out of court settlement to the chiefs and people of some five Ahafo North communities after members took Newmont Ghana Gold Limited (NGGL) to court for allegedly failing to comply with regulatory requirements in compensation processes and rejecting the preferred expert of the communities.

Disgruntled farmers in the Tano North District of the Ahafo Region who filed the application on 29th April, 2022 were seeking an order of interim injunction restraining the defendant (Newmont) from undertaking compensation valuations relative to the lands at Afrisipa and Yamfo in the Ahafo Region.

The court granted the out-of-court settlement request after hearing a plea from the paramount chief of the Yamfo traditional area, Nana Ansah Adu Baah II, on behalf of the other chiefs. The chiefs were given until June 3 to settle the case amicably and report back.

Court grants out of court settlement for Newmont
Nana Adu Baah II, who was also in court, told JoyNews that a meeting between the two parties will be set up quickly in order to settle the dispute peacefully.

He noted “We will arrange a meeting between Newmont and members of the five communities for them to voice out what worries them, in court if somebody is representing you, he may say something which even you don’t like it, so they will get the chance to voice out their worries for Newmont to respond, I want to tell them to take it cool and wait for the outcome.”

He advised citizens to be calm while the committee deliberates, saying that the conclusion would be communicated to all parties via their lawyers.
Many of the farmers’ farm fields and properties have been destroyed, according to the farmers, yet the firm seemed unconcerned about their condition…

The irate farmers, who numbered more than 200 and were wearing in red headgears and armbands, claimed that a substantial number of their members had been bullied and mistreated on their farms by officers of the NGGL and the EPA and had yet to get compensation.

The farmers are members of the Ahafo North Property Owners and Farmers Association, which is made up of local farmers from the five Newmont North Ahafo mine-take settlements of Yamfo, Susuanso, Afrisipakrom, Techire, and Adrobaa.

Court grants out of court settlement for Newmont
Ali Baba Mohammed, the farmers’ leader, said that taking the issue out of court is not a concern for them, but that the proper thing should be done.

He claims that since taking over, NGGL has damaged a number of farm areas without following the proper procedures or paying adequate compensation, which they find alarming.

“What made us to bring the case to court is that Newmont did not declare moratorium but yet still they’re telling us that there’s a moratorium, so nobody should continue any work and we have not been paid, in terms of negotiation everything is not just fair to us,” he said.

Court grants out of court settlement for Newmont
Mr. Mohammed stated that if actions to compensate them are not implemented, they will continue to put pressure on the mining firm until it does the right thing.

“Newmont is coming to work with the farmers and community members, therefore they should be careful not to do anything bad to the community, else they will never get their peace to work in our various communities,” he indicated.

Attempts to contact Newmont Ghana Gold Limited have been futile.


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