The Vice President, Dr Mahamudu Bawumia will leave Ghana on Tuesday, June 20 for a 5-day working visit to China. Dr. Bawumia’s visit is upon the invitation of the Vice President of China, Li Yuanchao.
A statement from the Chinese Foreign Ministry said the Vice President will hold talks with his Chinese counterpart as well as the Chairman of the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC), Yu Zhengsheng.
This will be the first official visit by a Ghanaian leader to China since the New Patriotic Party (NPP) government assumed office in January this year .
Ghana is part of the first group of Sub-Sahara African countries that established diplomatic relations with China.
Dr. Bawumia’s visit to the Asian country comes at a time when many Ghanaians are expressing concern over the involvement of Chinese in illegal mining, popularly known as ‘Galamsey’ in the country.
Although other nationals are involved in the illegal activity, the Chinese, are in the majority according to available statistics. In the last decade, thousands of Chinese illegal immigrants and miners have been deported from Ghana. ‘Chinese mission angry’ At the onset of the new government’s anti-galamsey fight, the Chinese mission in Ghana expressed anger at the manner in which Ghana is dealing with the issue of illegal mining and criticized the media for targeting China in their reportage on the issue.
The mission in a letter addressed to John Peter Amewu, Ghana’s Minister for Lands and Natural Resources, said if nothing changes about the nature of campaigns against illegal mining in the country, bilateral relations between Ghana and China would be affected.
The Chinese side is very concerned about this unhealthy tendency. We hope that the Ghanaian government will pay due attention to this situation, take the necessary action to stop such things from happening again and guide the media to give an objective coverage on the illegal mining issue so as to create a good environment for further development of our bilateral exchanges and cooperation,” the mission said.
Despite the development, the two countries continue to foster a good working relationship with, Ghana benefiting from loans and other resources from China for the country’s major infrastructural projects.