The Senior Manager-Human Resource at AngloGold Ashanti (Ghana) Limited responsible for Obuasi, Gold House and the Tema Ports Harbour Unit, Mad. Wosiela Eve Bobie, has said it is not right to categorise people under gender stereotypes because it erroneously defines how they must be treated.
Speaking on women in leadership, Mad. Bobie said: “When it comes to assessing leadership, certain attributes are often ascribed to people according to gender stereotypes. For example, an assertive male leader is described as ‘confident’, while a female leader of the same criterion is described as ‘bossy’. This, unfortunately, does not augur well for grooming women for leadership positions, and also undermines the authority of female leaders”.
Mad. Bobie made these remarks during a webinar organised by Women in Mining Ghana (WIMG), the umbrella-body of all women groups along the mining value chain, to commemorate International Womens’ Day (IWD).
Under the theme Women in Mining: Leading in Challenging Times, inspired by the United Nations (UN) theme for IWD 2021, ‘Women in leadership: Achieving an equal future in a COVID-19 world’, the webinar explored the professional journeys and experiences of four phenomenal senior female executives in the mining sector to mark International Women’s Day.
On the inclusion of women in business, she said: “It is imperative that businesses deliberately factor-in female empowerment as part of their organisational structure; and there must be systems in place which support them to succeed on the job. AngloGold Ashanti Ghana, for instance, has shown the way by increasing female inclusion in the business from 4%-12% since January 2019 – slightly higher that the industry average. This includes employing pregnant women. Also, in our just-ended Graduate Trainee Programme, 8 out of the 10 graduate trainees were females”.
Managing Director of AngloGold Ashanti (Ghana) Limited, Obuasi Mine, and President of the Ghana Chamber of Mines, Dr. Eric Asubonteng, congratulated the women for their various roles in growing businesses and shaping society. In his goodwill message to the women, he said:
“We can achieve gender parity by increasing the intake of females, not only on the lower level but also at Senior Management level. This will start by encouraging girls to take up roles in mining. Let them know that they can be because you are. In my line of work, I have found that the quality of decisions we make are shaped by women in my team.”
He added his voice to the need to make women-specific resources available to help them at work.
“There needs to be considerations for women in the design of PPEs, washrooms; as well as favourable interventions for mothers so they can perform optimally. I choose to challenge biases against women,” he said, adding that men should help create a conducive atmosphere for women at work.
“At AGA, our female agenda has been strongly supported by our male colleagues. We want to use this occasion to thank them for their support and encourage them to keep working hand-in-hand with us to enable us reach our collective goals,” Mad. Bobie added.
Other key speakers at the event were Vice President and Head of Sustainable Development for Gold Fields West Africa, Dr. Celestina Allotey; Vice President of Sustainability & External Relations, Newmont Africa Newmont Mining Corporation, Mad. Adiki O. Ayitevie; Global Director, Inclusion and Diversity at Newmont Mining Corporation, Mad. Beatrice Opoku-Asare. The event was moderated by Head of Mining & Metals West Africa at Standard Bank Group, Juliette Sheiddy Akamboe.
The International Women’s Day, celebrated on March 8 each year, is dedicated to celebrating women’s achievements in the social, economic, cultural and political spheres. The day also brings to attention gender parity and the rights of women. Globally, the day has been celebrated with two major themes: one by the UN, and a general International Women’s Day theme Choose to Challenge. Choose to Challenge highlights the importance of challenging biases and misconceptions in the interest of creating a more inclusive and gender-equal world.