Under the theme “Diversified, Decisive, Sustainable,” AngloGold Ashanti (Ghana) Limited (AGAG) organized its town hall meeting for stakeholders to give an update on the Obuasi Mine’s activities.
The three-day program, which started on August 17, 2020, was graced with the presence of the Municipal Chief Executive of Obuasi Municipal, Elijah Adansi-Bonah, District Chief Executive of Obuasi East District Assembly Faustina Amissah, Nananom, representatives of Parliamentarians, assembly members, the clergy, youth groups, NGO’s and other opinion leaders.
During the official opening of the program, Managing Director of the Obuasi Mine, Mr. Eric Asubonteng reiterated the company’s commitment to building relationships with stakeholders through continuous engagement.
“One of the significant achievements this year 2020, for the company, Obuasi, the communities around the mine and Ghana was the commemoration of the first gold pour of the Obuasi Mine. The hardwork put into reviving this iconic mine revealed the importance of teamwork, partnership, commitment, and the enduring power of shared values”.
The AngloGold Ashanti team, led by Mr. Asubonteng and supported by Mr. Emmanuel Baidoo, Senior Manager, Sustainability, updated stakeholders on the operations of the mine and the status of the Obuasi Redevelopment Project. Mr Asubonteng assured stakeholders of the company’s commitment to the Obuasi Redevelopment Project. He indicated that, Phase II of the project was ongoing despite the impact of the global CoVID-19 pandemic, which may cause a slight delay.
Several measures had been put in place to combat the pandemic, including on-site testing facility, treatment centre and an ultra-modern Intensive Care Unit (ICU) set up at AGA Health Foundation (AGAHF). Other interventions include:
- Disinfection of all health facilities numbering over 20 and all major markets in Obuasi
- Payment of 3 months’ rent for Isolation Centres for Obuasi Municipal and Obuasi East.
- CoVID-19 protocols rolled out (face mask, hand hygiene, social distancing, travel and site visit protocols, etc.)
- USD 100,000 contributed through the Chamber of Mines towards government’s interventions.
- A Centre set up under Community Trust Fund to produce hand sanitizer
- Three local suppliers engaged, and their capacities built to manufacture and supply nose masks to the mine.
- 205 boxes of hand sanitizers, 460 units of Veronica buckets, 650 pieces of nose masks and two mini boxes of hand gloves donated to host communities and stakeholders.
- 3,000 copies of CoVID-19 education posters donated to basic schools and religious bodies in Obuasi
- Work routines reviewed and changes made to bussing arrangements, main entrance, offices, meetings, etc.
- Disinfection of buses, offices, other work areas
- Remote work arrangement in place (where possible)
- Revised rosters in some departments, to provide for “back up” team and to reduce risk exposure.
- High-risk employees identified and being managed to reduce their exposure (on a case by case basis)
With safety being the first value of the Mine, the safety of employees remain paramount. Accordingly, the mine has relaunched the ‘Make Safety Personal’ Campaign, to encourage employees to speak up on safety matters, sign and commit to safety requirements and regularly give feedback to teams on safety performance following the unfortunate record of recent fatalities.
Updating stakeholders on the company’s social interventions, Mr. Baidoo mentioned the company’s effort to support the Government, especially in the area of Education.
“AngloGold Ashanti recently partnered the Otumfuo Foundation and Ghana Education Service to support Governments’ e-learning initiative to facilitate remote teaching and learning for students in Obuasi.”
Further, as part of the Educational Improvement Program, AGAG donated 1,200 pieces of furniture to basic schools within the Obuasi Municipality and the Obuasi East District. Likewise, the Senior High Schools in the Municipality and Obuasi East District received 250 Desks and Chairs and 150 Desks and Chairs respectively to facilitate learning.
Among other interventions, he highlighted that, the Enterprise Development Programme, that has successfully trained 100 local SMEs and the Graduate Trainee Programme are all part of the mine’s Social Management Plan, the blueprint to bring an impactful development in Obuasi.
In his closing remarks, Mr Asubonteng thanked all stakeholders for the continued support and assured that, Obuasi Mine will remain proactive in its engagement with stakeholders and responsive to their issues and concerns.