Dear Shatta Wale,
We trust this letter finds you amidst the boundless energy and creativity that define your remarkable work as an artist.
The reason you are one of our favourite artists not only in Ghana but globally. Your music is loved and inspires many, especially the youth in ways you cannot imagine.
Your influence is profound, and that is not lost on you, because of the huge fan base you command through the Shatta Movement.
You bring Freedom and help the teeming youth find their Level in an age challenged by economic downturns, with resultant high unemployment rates in many African countries.
As though that is not enough, the global polycrisis of climate change, biodiversity loss and environmental destruction is making coping strategies even more diﬃcult, with youth in Africa doing whatever it takes to travel abroad to find greener pastures, if indeed there is really something like that.
Your upcoming and much-anticipated end-of-year explosive month-long concert is the talk of town. We are partcularly in admiraton but concerned knowing how far and wide your impact can reach. Coming 8th of December, you are scheduled to give a mega concert that will also see the launch of Ellembele Community Mining.
While the prospect of new ventures is always exciting, the potential environmental and societal consequences associated with unsustainable mining cannot be overlooked, particularly when many of our rivers and food systems are being destroyed.
The mining activities being endorsed are widely acknowledged for their detrimental impact on community farms, water bodies, and biodiversity habitats. The repercussions of such practices include polluted water bodies, destroyed farmlands, and the loss of biodiversity, creating a grim reality for both the present and future inhabitants of the aﬀected areas.
You certainly have witnessed the devastating impacts of the environmental and societal consequences associated with mining activities all over the country.
We are therefore worried that, by supporting this, you will be contributing to the destruction of rivers and farms lands, while depriving communities of investments to pursue green and sustainable job opportunities that do not leave negative consequences for the health of the youth, the environment and a healthy environment for future generations.
While I understand the importance of supporting various causes, it is crucial to consider the long-lasting effects that such activities can have on our communities, ecosystems, and future generations. Everyone is feeling the impact of what the last decade of unsustainable mining has done to us. Everyone is now calling for a change and not more mining.
In light of these concerns, we implore you to consider the potential harm that could be inflicted on communities and the environment through the endorsement of such destructive practices. Instead, we encourage you to leverage your influence to advocate for more sustainable alternatives, such as the creation of green jobs for youth.
Even now, as we write this letter, thousands of youths from around the world are gathering in Dubai to demand their governments shine towards a green and just future, investing in sustainable solutions that secure the land and water for now and the future.
Many Ghanaian youth are among them, passionately advocating for a change in trajectory. We got here by the century-long prioritisation of extractive industries in the oil and mining sector. Leading to increasing global GHG emissions, deforestation and environmental degradation.
There is a global push for change. Our government is here at COP 28 supporting the call for emissions reduction from fossil fuels and a halt to deforestation and forest and ecosystem degradation.
Charity, they say must begin at home, and that means we should also be moving away from our century-long focusing and acceleration of mining industries creating jobs for a few, but cumulatively destroying water and food systems aﬀecting millions of lives in Ghana.
Ghana must reimagine and reinvent solutions for our youth and voices like yours can help shape the agenda. By championing initiatives that prioritize sustainable development, you can contribute to building a brighter future for communities while safeguarding our planet.
Green jobs not only provide employment opportunities for the youth but also support industries that prioritize environmental responsibility and conservation.
Your lyrics employ us to be heroes for our families and also “…so mi raise di banner cah mi love mi own motherland,” I believe in the power of your voice to inspire positive change, and I hope you will consider redirecting your support towards initiatives that align with the principles of sustainability and social responsibility.
Together, we can foster a world where prosperity and environmental sustainability coexist harmoniously. Yes, we need to create sustainable jobs for the teeming unemployed youth, community mining is however not the solution and we cannot continue forcing it on the people as we are doing now.
Let’s us raise heroes and banners that inspire hope for the youth while also guaranteeing a sustainable future.
We eagerly appreciate witnessing the positive impact your influential voice can have on the youth in Ghana, championing the green revolution in the future Shatta to the World.
Deputy National Director
A Rocha Ghana
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