An Accra High Court presided by Justice Ackah-Boafo has today ruled against the decision by the Lands and Natural Resources Minister, John Peter Amewu, to revoke the mining lease of Exton Cubic Group Limited.
According to Justice Ackah-Boafo’s ruling, the Minister of Lands and Natural Resources, John Peter Amewu, exceeded his powers by withdrawing the license of the mining company.
He added that, it was only the court which could revoke mining licenses in such circumstances.
The court, however, dismissed an application by Exton Cubic for an injunction restricting the minister or his agents from interfering with its acquired rights.
By the judgement, the mining license of Exton Cubic Group to prospect for bauxite at Nyinahini bauxite concession of the Tano Offin Forest Reserve in the Ashanti Region, has been restored.
After the ruling, Counsel for Exton Cubic Group, Edudzi Tamakloe cautioned government officials to desist from unilateral decisions without recourse to law.
It will be recalled that when the government begun its campaign to end galamsey last year, the people of Nyinahini reported of some mining activities of Exton Cubic Group Limited within the Tano Offin Forest Reserve in the Ashanti Region.
This led to the Ashanti Regional Minister ordering for the equipment of Exton Cubic to be ceased after the people of the area resisted the company from going to the forest to prospect for bauxite within the concession.
The Minister in charge of the sector later revoked the licence of the Exton Cubic Group Limited which was disputed with the company complaining that it was being targeted by the government for political reasons, due to Ibrahim Mahama’s relations with former President John Dramani Mahama.
Exton Cubic, after failing to get the minister to reverse the revocation, filed an application at the High Court seeking a reversal of government’s decision to cancel its licence.
In their suit, the company argued that the Minister’s decision was unreasonable, unjust, and an abuse of his powers.
Exton Cubic, among others, sought a declaration that “the Minister of Lands and Natural Resources acted ultra vires [beyond] his statutory powers when he revoked Exton Cubic Group Limited mining leases.”
It also contended that, revoking of its license was “breach of the rules of natural Justice”, and in breach of the company’s “rights to administrative justice and property.”