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Tuah-Yeboah: Aisha Huang’s jail term not lenient

Galamsey queen En Huang, aka Aisha Huang, has been convicted of all charges levelled against her by an Accra high court on Monday (4 December)

Alfred Tuah-Yeboah, the deputy attorney general has clarified circumstances that led to the prison term and fine imposed on Chinese galamsey queen En Huang, aka Aisha Huang.

The high court in Accra on Monday convicted, fined, and sentenced Aisha Huang, to four years in prison for undertaking mining operations without a licence and for entering the Ghanaian jurisdiction while prohibited from re-entry.

She was also fined a total of four thousand (4,000) penalty units which is equivalent to forty-eight thousand Ghana cedis (GHC48,000).

Lawyers of Ms Huang ahead of her sentencing, prayed for the court to impose a fine and also asked that she should be deported because she has been in prison custody for the last year and two months throughout her trial.

Some critics including the former Minister of Lands and Natural Resources , Inusah Fuseini have, however, described the jail term as very lenient, adding that it demonstrates lack of seriousness on the part of the government in fighting the illegal mining menace.

However, reacting to the development on the Asaase Breakfast Show on Tuesday (5 December), Tuah-Yeboah said Aisha Huang was convicted based on 2015 and 2017 laws.

“I think Inusah Fuseini got it wrong, because when it comes to punishment, it is so clear that when a person is convicted and is about to be sentenced or punishment, the law applicable is the law which was in existence at the time the crime was committed,” he said.

“Now if you look at the Minerals and Mining Act (Act 703)) it was amended in 2015, Act 900 amended that Act, under Act 900, the punishment for engaging in illegal mining was stated as a fine of 3,000 penalty units and an imprisonment of five years minimum.

“And so, having arrested her, and having claimed by our charge sheet that she committed these offences except the immigration offence, between 2015 and 2017, the only punishment that could be exacted on her is the punishment sanctioned under Act 900,” Tuah-Yeboah said.

Listen to Alfred Tuah-Yeboah in the attached audio clip below:


Reporting by Fred Dzakpata in Accra


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