“Following the appointment of Awie Frey as Head of Operations, I am pleased to announce the appointment of Eric Broni as Senior Manager–Engineering, effective 1st January 2023.
"Eric is a versatile professional mechanical engineer with over 19 years of experience within the mining industry, of which 5 have been in management roles. He has worked extensively in various roles in Surface Infrastructure, Processing Plant, Underground Mining, Asset Management, Facilities Maintenance, and in the project space during Phases 1 and 2 of the Obuasi Redevelopment Project.”
This was the communique issued by the Managing Director of AngloGold Ashanti Ghana Ltd, Obuasi, Mr. Eric Asubonteng regarding the appointment of Ing. Eric Broni as the Senior Manager - Engineering AngloGold Ashanti Ghana Ltd, Obuasi Mine.
Mr. Eric Broni who was raised at Kwabrafoso, a popular suburb of Obuasi has risen to the top management of the Global mining giant from a humble beginning as a Mechanical Technician some 19 years ago.
Speaking for the first time since his appointment, Ing. Broni said he was excited to have come this far as an 'Obuasi boy' who has lived all his life in Obuasi, attended Kwabrafoso Primary and Junior High School and Obuasi Senior High School.
He told the Media that after graduating from Kumasi Polytechnic with HND in Mechanical Engineering, and teaching at St. Margret Senior High School for a while, he enrolled at the famed AGC Engineering Training School in Obuasi in 2003 and proceeded to have full-time employment in the Mine in February 2006.
Journey so far
From a very humble beginning in the Mine, he did all sorts of work including weeding, painting, machining, operator, etc which he said strengthened and challenged him.
He said in his 3 years dint of hard work at the junior level in the mine, he was elevated to the Supervisory level where he was moved from the Compressor Station to the Water Services section and worked as Mechanical Supervisor.
He attributed his quick rise to hard work and his ability to analyze a situation and come out with the best solutions. “These attributes convinced my boss who saw me as a critical thinker to facilitate my promotion", he mentioned.
Grit, Focus, and Education
Ing. Broni mentioned that his hunger to succeed in his field and the Mine culminated in his rise to other positions in the Mine even when other Mining Companies approached him with juicy offers. He said, " in some situations, I had to act in some roles for 18 months which was mostly unprecedented at that time but knowing what I wanted in life, I held on".
Juggling the responsibilities of family, a full-time job and education was the most challenging thing he had done in life. According to the current Senior Manager, Engineering of AngloGold Ashanti Ghana Ltd (AGAG), he enrolled at the University of Ghana to study BA in Economics and Psychology and BSc. Mechanical Engineering at the KNUST, simultaneously.
He successfully graduated with Second class upper degree and a First-class degree in BA in Psychology and Economics and BSc in Mechanical Engineering respectively.
His resolve to pursue education to the highest level even after attaining two (2) degrees saw him adding a Master’s Degree in Business Administration in Strategic Management and Consulting and other certificates to the plethora of academic laurels. He holds a Postgraduate Diploma in Leadership and Development from the University of Professional Studies, Accra (UPSA)
Promotions after promotions
Unfazed by the challenges his job comes with, Mr. Broni said his trump card has always been God, focus, a positive attitude, and right education. Hence his meteoric rise from Mechanical Technician to Engineering Superintendent Assets Management and Reliability with a little over a decade in the Mine. He believes that everything begins with God, continues with God, and ends with God.
Dubbed Mr. Versatility, the ' Obuasi boy' has worked in different departments of the mine by way of job rotation and enrichment including Human Resources, Processing, Underground, Mining operations, Geology, Mining Technical Services, Supply Chain, etc just to get a better understanding of how different departments within the Mine operate. He has also had career development at some of AGA's world-class mines offshore, Tropicana Gold Mine and Sunrise Dam Gold Mine, all in Australia. He has worked with Ausenco Rylson, DRA Global, and SRK Consulting during the Obuasi Mine Feasibility study.
Engineering Lead of Project 300
He counted himself fortunate to have been retained by AGAG leadership even after Obuasi Mine announced Care and Maintenance which saw the retrenchment of over 6000 workers.
He added that he played a key role during Project 300 which saw the rebirth of the Obuasi Mine in 2019. This was particularly confirmed in the communique authored by the Managing Director announcing Mr. Eric Broni's appointment as Senior Manager of Engineering.
He was a key engineering resource during the Obuasi Feasibility Study and P300 Study, leading up to the approval of the Obuasi Redevelopment Project by the AGA Board in 2018.
Appointment as the Senior Manager of Engineering
Having worked as Engineering Manager at all Engineering sections including Process Plant, Surface Infrastructure, and Underground Engineering, Deputy to the Senior Manager Engineering, Ing. Broni was later appointed as Resident Engineer of the Mine. As per Mineral Commission regulation L1 2182, the Resident Engineer is the Registered Engineering Manager for the Mine. After some time when the role of Senior Manager Engineering became vacant, Eric applied per the company recruitment procedures and became successful in the role.
This represented a huge milestone for the Obuasi nurtured Engineer who was brought to Obuasi at the age of two (2).
Now, the astute engineer is still reading MSc in Mining Engineering and Management at the South Dakota School of Mines, USA. The ambitious “Obuasi boy” who is a Pastor at the Covenant Chapel aspires to attain higher positions at AngloGold Ashanti in the future.
What is he bringing on board in his new position
He tells SMS Media that he will be much more focused on grooming the young engineers in Obuasi through the Ghana Institution of Engineers (GHIE), Obuasi Chapter. He bemoaned the fact that the youth in Obuasi did not strategically position themselves well when AGA Obuasi was bouncing back in 2019 by acquiring the necessary skills the company will need. Nevertheless, there are still opportunities around where the indigenes can learn trade and skills from AGAG Capacity Building Centre at Anyinam. The key is to focus on the right objective and determine to achieve it.
He said he plans to collaborate with the Local authority in Obuasi and the Sustainability department of AGA to build the capacity of young engineers in Obuasi through symposiums.
On the Mine, he said he intends to create an Innovation and Ideas hub where people can dump their ideas which can be nurtured and project-managed to solve problems of the Mine.
A proud family man, Ing Eric Broni is married to Philomena Kwarteng Broni and they are blessed with two children, Erica God'sgift Broni and Nana Yaw Broni. Wofa Yaw Broni, his dad who lives at Kwabrafoso in Obuasi, is his only surviving parent.
Advice to the youth of Obuasi
He advised the youth who want to attain greater heights in life to have a determined heart. He said, " it is always important for the youth not to always concentrate on the fact that the mine is on their land but rather educate themselves or acquire necessary skills to enable them to have opportunities in the Mine". It is better to spend a little time now learning a trade, skills, and on education which are needed by employers and prepare yourself for the market than to spend many years complaining of no opportunities.