African Social Science Review


The control of mining has been a core issue of contention between the modern state and traditional authorities in Ghana since the colonial period. Even though there are regulations governing legitimate mining in Ghana, illegal small-scale mining, with strong traditional practices, has surged. This article uses interview data from Asutifi North District of Ghana to explain that traditional institutions, though aware of the illegality of these small-scale mines, performed rites enabling them. The state should cede some decision making over mineralized lands to traditional authorities so that they become part of the responsibility for mining in their area.



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