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27.07.2008 Regional News

More people benefit from alternative livelihood programme

By gna
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Over 1,900 people from the catchments communities of Anglogold Ashanti Iduapriem Limited (AAIL) have benefit from its Alternative Livelihood Programme since the beginning of the programme in 2005.

AAIL has since 2004 invested nearly $2,000,000 in its Social and Community Development programmes in areas such as water, health and sanitation, education, and general infrastructure including feeder roads.

The company involves Tarkwa-Nsuaem Municipal Assembly, Ministry of Food and Agriculture, Department of Fisheries and Co-operatives, Ministry of Health, Land Valuation Board and other government agencies in its programmes to enable it to achieve its targets.

This came to light at the re-launch of AAIL’s Alternative Livelihood Programme dubbed ‘Hand-In-Hand’ at a ceremony at Iduapriem.

Mr George Mireku Duker, Tarkwa–Nsuaem Municipal Chief Executive, said government was committed to creating conducive atmosphere for business to thrive.

He appealed to companies to give their best in terms of living up to their social responsibilities for their catchments.

Mr. Duker said Tarkwa-Nsuaem Municipal Assembly cannot develop the municipality alone and would therefore encourage and collaborate with companies to embark on ventures that would raise the living standards of the people.
Mr. Duker told beneficiaries to form corporative groups to enable them access support from financial institutions.
Mr David Kwesi Renner, Managing Director of AAIL, said in 2005 his company launched the sustainable Alternative Livelihood Programme dubbed ‘Hand-In-Hand’ which initiated interventions such as vegetable and oil palm production, small ruminant rearing, snail and fish farming, piggery and soap-making among others.

He said micro credit financing packages were also offered to groups and individuals who engaged in micro enterprises such as bread baking, hair dressing and petty trading.

Mr Renner said the next phase of the programme included value addition to the primary produce.

Therefore, the company has installed an oil palm processor and corn mill at Adieyie, cassava and corn mill at Abompuniso and another oil palm processor at Teberebie.

AAIL has looked at other products that are abundant in the area and are working on detailed feasibility studies on them.
Bio diesel using oil palm and pork processing are two key areas which AAIL was currently looking at and the use of bamboo which also thrives in the area as another value addition proposition.

Nana Kwabena Angu ll, Chief of Apinto Divisional Area, commended the company for the programme and said it would make those who are not employed by mine to make ends meet.

He told the beneficiaries to seek the advice of the Agricultural Extension Officers.

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