This case involves members of five communities at Chirano in the Eastern Region and the Chirano Gold Mines Ltd.
Chirano Gold Mines Ltd. without prior notice to the farmers and with the help of national security personnel entered into the farms of the Plaintiffs and destroyed their cocoa trees and other food crops claiming that its mining concession covers an area including the said farms.
Attempts by the farmers and residents of the communities to resist the take over of their farm lands were met by brutalities from the police and Military Personnel. Apart from the destruction caused to the farm lands, the farmers also claim the company’s activities have caused serious environmental degradation and pollution of their water bodies.
After several deliberations the company offered to pay GH¢2.50p for each destroyed cocoa tree as compensation which the farmers refused to accept because as it falls even below the approved rates of GH¢5.20 set by Land Valuation Board in 2003. Several attempts to get the company to pay the approved rates including petitions to the Ministers of Defence and Justice yielded no positive results. CEPIL upon the advice of the community members filled a suit at the High Court Sefwi Wiawso in September 2007.
The Plaintiffs are seeking the following reliefs among others:
- Payment of fair and adequate compensation for the destruction of cocoa trees of the Applicants
- Order enjoining the 1st Respondents form continuing to pollute the sources of drinking water of the Applicants and Chirano communities
- Other directed at the Respondents to immediately supply potable water to the Applicants and the inhabitants of Chirano community and its environs.
- Damages for violation of the rights of the Applicants and the Chirano community to a clean and healthy environment