I’m concerned about Freddie Blay’s defence of accused illegal miners – Lands Minister

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The Lands Minister says he is worried that the former NPP National Chairman’s law firm is defending four Chinese standing trial for their alleged involvement in illegal mining (galamsey).

Even though Samuel Abu Jinapor is not happy about it, he said it is a situation he does not have control over. 

Speaking to the media on Thursday, October 13, he said the decision would fuel conspiracy theories against the government’s galamsey fight.

“Am I concerned about that situation? Yeah, I am concerned because it has a way of fueling conspiracy theories,” Mr Jinapor said.

“Whether rightly or wrongly or grounded or not grounded, it will fuel conspiracy theories, but it is a matter we have to live with because that is the reality. We don’t have control over it.”

The Minister who doubles as Damongo Member of Parliament also said he wished Mr Blay had not taken up the case. 

“I wish Freddie Blay declined it but that is not for me to say; because immediately his daughter announced the brief in court, I told my assistant this is going to be controversial and will fuel conspiracy theories,” he said.

Mr. Jinapor, however, assured that the government will ensure the prosecution of the culprits.

“What we have to do is to continue to prosecute these accused persons in a very spirited manner and hopefully secure convictions and secure severe punishments to them, and that will dispel all the conspiracy theories that are being bandied around.”

The four accomplices; Gao Jin Cheng, Lu Qi Jun, Haibin Go and Zhang Zhipeng together with the ‘galamsey’ queen, Aisha Huang are being held by the state for their involvement in illegal mining, popularly known as ‘galamsey’ in the country.

On Tuesday, a private legal practitioner, Lucy Ekeleba Blay, announced in court that she was holding brief for Mr Blay in the case of the four accomplices of Aisha Huang.

Mr Blay, following the announcement, has come under severe criticism at a time the government is already facing accusations of shielding more prominent, politically-exposed persons involved in galamsey.

But in defence, the NPP guru said his law firm has the responsibility of representing persons they believe are innocent of charges brought against them.

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