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BNI PROBES ESPIONAGE ON ‘GALAMSEY’ MINISTER

General News

The Bureau of National Investigations has begun a probe into the incident of secret surveillance device that was placed in the office of John Peter Amewu, the Minister for Lands and Natural Resources, who is leading  a relentless fight against illegal mining, infamously called ‘galamsey’, in the country.

The Bureau of National Investigations has begun a probe into the incident of secret surveillance device that was placed in the office of John Peter Amewu, the Minister for Lands and Natural Resources, who is leading  a relentless fight against illegal mining, infamously called ‘galamsey’, in the country.

 

  The device, suspected to be a bug, was retrieved by officials from the National Security during a routine screening exercise at the Ministry.

    The National Security yesterday explained that the surveillance device, which is able to pick low volume sounds about 30 metres away, had a data storage and transmitting units. The device was said to have been pinned to the back of the Coat of Arms hanging in the office of the Minister.

    Mr Amewu, who confirmed the discovery an interview with Joy News yesterday, expressed surprise over the issue.

    “The device was discovered during a screening process and it is quite surprising such a device could be planted in the office. The offices of the ministers are expected to be screened from time to time as part of security arrangements and it was one of such exercises this was found,” he stated.

    He added, “The kind of jobs we do regarding security concerns, we have to do some of these things occasionally but I would not know who planted it there.”

    The Minister further stated that as part of the investigations “National Security has been to my office at least two times. Unfortunately, they were supposed to be there this weekend [but could not make it] and I will reengage them. The National Security, through the Security Minister, is on top of the issue and I think they will be able to get feedback on the development.”

    Mr Amewu suspects that somebody was trying to be mischievous and playing smart, yet he assured the public that his outfit was working assiduously to avert future occurrence.

    “The office is a public one and others have access to it. I am not worried about whatever information has gone out because it is a public office. We are however trying to put necessary security appliances in place to check a similar thing in the future. It is possible it was there before I came to the office,” he disclosed.

    On the hand, Mr Amewu said he was not worried as “conversations that go on in that office are supposed to be for the consumption of the general public and for the interest of Ghanaians and so I am not so much worried what might have gone out.”

    Responding to a question on whether the device could have been hidden in the building before he officially assumed office, Mr Amewu said “it is possible but National Security is investigating.”

    The Minister has been at the forefront of the nation’s fight against illegal mining since his appointment in January this year.