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25.05.2007 General News

Bring life to Obuasi mines – Otumfuo

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The Asantehene, Otumfuo Osei Tutu II, has urged management of Anglogold Ashanti to keep faith with the merger with former Ashanti Goldfields Company (AGC) and ensure that life is brought back to the Obuasi mine.

He said he was adequately briefed on the tenets of the merger including the replacement of obsolete machines and the bringing in of additional ones that would make the Obuasi mine productive and viable.

The Asantehene said the situation where the Obuasi mine was 'sinking' leading to the redundancy of workers was not the best and needed to be addressed.

Otumfuo Osei Tutu II said this on Wednesday when the new country Manager of the company, Mr. Ernest Kofi Abankroh, the new Managing Director for Obuasi mine, Mr. John Miller and Mr Y.B. Amponsah, the new General Manager for Sustainable Development programme of the AngloGold Ashanti (Obuasi) paid a courtesy call on him at Manhyia.

He said: ''As earlier promised by the top hierarchy of Anglogold Ashanti during the merger, there is the need for the company to replace the old machines and also bring additional equipment to facilitate the generation of new life into the Obuasi mine."
He acknowledged the enormous contributions the Obuasi mine had offered towards the development of the nation, including provision of jobs to many people and foreign exchange earnings and said Manhyia was closely following the operations of the mine.

Otumfuo Osei Tutu called for transparency in the management of the Obuasi mine to avert any industrial action by the workers.

"Let the workers know the real situation on the ground and also offer them the necessary training so that they can all assist to improve the mine."

He reiterated his call on the company to consider the engagement of Ghanaian experts more than the expatriates who tend to worsen the financial burden on the company because of their fat salaries and other benefits.

Mr. Abankroh briefed the Asantehene on some challenges confronting the Obuasi operation that included illegal mining activities on its concession and the rampant stealing of the company's equipment.

He said apart from the fact that the illegal mining was against the laws of the land, it was a dangerous and risky business which at times leads to the death of some of the illegal miners

Mr. Miller, the new Managing Director, said the Obuasi mine was good and had good people and was therefore hopeful of the future prospects of the mine.

Source: GNA

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