In 2015, The MCAS was installed in the Minerals Commission to increase effectiveness, accountability and compliance in the management of mineral rights and related revenues. In 2016, it was deployed as a successful pilot phase in two District Offices. Namely Tarkwa and Bolgatanga. The Commission is ready to deploy the system in the remaining 9 District Offices and train all technical officers to operate the system and field monitoring devices. The switch from paper base licensing to an electronic or online licensing will empower the District Officers and improve small scale application processing. For instance, search reports for small scale applications will no longer be carried out in Accra, but in the District office of the area of interest.
The implementation of MCAS at the Minerals Commission seeks to improve and strengthen current levels of compliance checks and licence administration procedures and practices. A systematic processing of the entire lifecycle of mineral licences and related payments, including monitoring for compliance by tracking royalties, contract terms, and production reports has been introduced. The IT system, when used in conjunction with the online data portal allows for data exchange, which are made available online to relevant stakeholders. These systematic procedures reinforce the government’s capacity to absorb revenue, facilitate audits and thus increase investor’s confidence in the administration of mineral titles.
As support to Monitoring and Evaluation Department and to the District offices of the Minerals Commission, an RD Quantum Mobile App was developed to enable officers to monitor and report on mining activities from the field. Handheld devices have been procured to equip the Minerals Commission with the tools to access data from the Mining Cadastre System remotely. Officers are able to lodge field assessment reports directly onto the device and straight to the MCAS for another officer’s information. The RD quantum app is available on google play to all MCAS users for installation onto android phones. Information on all licences and applications will be readily available on the App. Features of the app coupled with GPS function of the device it is installed allow the user to locate any mining concession in the area visited.
RDF has installed the latest Mining Cadastre Administration System (MCAS) at the Minerals Commission of Ghana through funding from the Australian Government, Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade.
The IT system introduced a systematic method for processing, and managing mining titles and associated revenues, including monitoring for compliance. The online data repository contributes to this cycle of accountability and transparency by publishing all mining revenues online and making the data available to stakeholders.
It allows the government to make available public information related to mining rights and associated payments. It gives investors and civil society a better overview of the mining situation in the country and allows the government to generate more revenue. The Government of Ghana is always in control of the data presentation and user permission.
The Online Repository as a tool for enhancing transparency is in line with Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI). Making all data relating to mineral rights and associated payments available publicly on the data repository creates a platform for inclusiveness in policy formulation. Up to 210 users have registered onto the portal, including government institutions, mining companies, researchers, civil society organizations and refinery companies.
The RD Quantum App, will be equipped with additional measurement and GPS accuracy tools to help locate and map illegal mining sites to inform adequate authorities and trigger an enforcement response.
The MCAS went live for processing new applications live and application certificates issued to applicant as required by the Minerals and Mining (Licensing) Regulations, 2012. About 900 records of applications and licences have been digitized into the system along with related payments and supporting documents.