Following the expiration of the 3-year Social Management Plan (SMP), AngloGold Ashanti, Obuasi Mine has launched another all-inclusive 10-year Socio-Economic Development Plan (SEDP) to further accelerate development in Obuasi.
The 10-year SMP according to Richard Jordinson, Senior Vice President, Ghana & Tanzania Business Unit, was borne out of a strategic consultation with its major stakeholders, keeping in mind the long life of mine, and the need to ensure all stakeholders benefit from a viable and secure mine.
He assured that the Company will continue to pursue strategic relationships with its stakeholders to build resilient and socio-economically self-sustaining communities through Improved Social Development, Diversified and Sustained Local Economy, and Improved Partnerships.
Giving an account of the just-ended 3-year Social Management Plan, Mr. Jordinson said the Plan was successful.
He said the erstwhile Plan captured areas like Education and Youth Development, Health, Social Infrastructure, Agriculture Economic Development.
He mentioned a plethora of interventions that accompanied the Plan.
He said the company collaborated with its major stakeholders to establish the KNUST- OBUASI campus adding that Various Youth Apprenticeship Programmes were also rolled out.
Additionally, he said, through the 3- year SMP, the Mine funded the construction of a fully furnished Maternity Block for the Obuasi Government Hospital and put up a state-of-the-art Intensive Care Unit at the AGA Health Foundation, which has proven tremendously helpful in the management of COVID-19 cases in Obuasi, reducing mortality and morbidity in patients.
“Our SMP also birthed the construction of a 1.3Km asphalt road from Kunka Junction to Nyameso Shell filling station in Obuasi which has since eased the burden of motorists plying that stretch.
Our 10-year SEDP is not a knee-jerk intervention – Eric Asubonteng
The Managing Director of Anglogold Ashanti Obuasi mine, Eric Asubonteng emphasised that the 10-year Socio-Economic Development Plan has been thought through, and the final product was a result of a year of consultation involving major stakeholders of the Mine.
Again, he said, the Plan was a reflection of the lessons learnt in the implementation of the 3-year Social Management Plan, which ended this year.
Detailing the key components of the SEDP, Dr. Asubonteng said the Company plans to put up an Eco- Industrial Park at the former ‘ETS site ‘ in the Obuasi East District.
He said the Eco-industrial park will comprise a community of businesses located on a common property in which businesses seek to achieve enhanced environmental, economic and social performance through collaboration in managing environmental and resource issues.
He also said the company, through the 10-year SEDP, will collaborate with KNUST to establish the AGA Health Foundation as a teaching hospital and also build a Community STEM library at KNUST- Obuasi campus.
The Managing Director also said the company will establish a Robotics Training centre at Obuasi Senior High Technical school, establish AGA North Mine Workshops as a functional Engineering Training Centre and also train 1000 youth in mining-related disciplines.
“To improve Community infrastructure, AGA plans to rehabilitate 10km of road networks in Obuasi, construct and equip 3 police stations or posts and install 4km overhead powerline and Street lighting.
Mr. Simon Osei Mensah, the Ashanti Regional Minister mentioned the role played by the Asantehene Otumfuo Osei Tutu II, Eric Asubonteng, the MD of AGAG and the President His Excellency Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo in the redevelopment of the Obuasi Mine.
He was optimistic that the 10-year Socio-Economic Development Plan, if successfully implemented, will enhance the development of Obuasi and its surrounding areas.
He however cautioned illegal miners who have pitched camp at the concessions of AngloGold Ashanti to move away, since the company needs a congenial atmosphere to operate.
Her Excellency Grace Jeanet Mason said the 10-year Socio-Economic Development Plan of Anglogold Ashanti presents an opportunity for the Mine to give back to the community and provide the needed development the people of Obuasi deserve.
She said the current bilateral reaction between Ghana and South Africa, especially in the extractive sector, will inure to the benefit of both countries.
Nana Opagyakotwere Bonsrah Afriyie II, the Adansihene, said the Adansi Traditional Area will be closely monitoring the implementation of the 10-year SEDP to ensure that what have been listed are successfully implemented.