AngloGold Ashanti (AGA)-Obuasi Mine has undertaken and inaugurataed a 1.3-kilometre asphalted road project in the Obuasi Municipality of the Ashanti Region.
Construction of the road, which also forms a major part of the main Obuasi-Dunkwa highway, was done by the Mine at a cost of US$1million, with the expectation of easing transportation of people, goods and services in the area.
The project, executed by Knatto Complex Limited, included construction of a drainage system and laying asphalt from Kunka Junction to Nyameso Shell Filling Station.
It was realised under the three-year Social Development Plan launched by the Mine, which strategises to diversify the local economy as well as improve infrastructure development in Obuasi. This is hoped to ensure that host communities of the Mine are better off.
The Managing Director of AGA, Mr. Eric Asubonteng, said the Mine is a key part of the host communities; and in view of this, deliberate efforts are made to ensure there is shared growth in a number of ways.
This, he said, includes the introduction of local employment procedures; prioritising local businesses in the commercial and procurement process of the Mine; and establishment of the community trust fund among others.
“Our history and record shows that we are committed,” and as the Social Development Plan is elapsing by end of the year 2021, he noted that the next phase of this intervention is being considered and is hoped to have a longer-term view.
With redevelopment of the Obuasi Mine on course, host communities are assured to continued benefit as the Mine progresses.
AngloGold Ashanti, through positive engagement and development for mutual benefit across all stages of the Mine life-cycle, focuses on contributing to the development of economically, socially and physically resilient societies.
The Ashanti Regional Minister, Simon Osei Mensah, in an interview during the ceremony observed that what has been yielded is a result of the good collaboration between government and the Mine.
He mentioned that the commitment of government and major stakeholders of the Mine – including the Asantehene, Otumfuo Osei Tutu II – led to revival of the Mine.
With reopening of the Mine, he recounted that it has brought enormous benefit to the people; including the establishment of a university campus for the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST).
Additionally, the Mine continues to invest in several other social intervention geared toward improving livelihoods of the local people.
He advised road users, particularly drivers, to endeavour to shun practices that lead to deterioration of the road.
While appreciating the project’s quality, he observed that: “One of the banes of the country is poor road construction. A road will be constructed, and just after one year it has to undergo rehabilitation. The money that could have been invested in construction of other road projects will therefore be spent on maintenance”.
It is against this background that he cautioned against such types of negative culture. If this is achieved, he said, at least within a few years to come, if all roads in the Ashanti Region are not bitumen surfaced or asphalted at least 90 percent should be in good shape to boost economic activities.
Some drivers who ply the newly-constructed road expressed gratitude for the work done by the Mine, while also appealing for other road users to contribute in ensuring good maintenance of the road.