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23.01.2009 Regional News

Obuasi gold mine still viable but needs injection - Asantehene

By gna
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The Obuasi mine under Anglo Gold Ashanti is still viable and needs heavy investment by the management, Otumfuo Osei Tutu II, Asantehene on Friday noted.

He indicated that the current annual production of about 350,000 ounces of gold was low and this had not reached the target which management has set itself before the take over.

A statement signed by Mr. G. B. Osei Antwi, Media Relations Manager at the Manhyia Palace and issued in Kumasi said the Asantehene made the assertion when Mr John Miler, the out-going Managing Director for the Obuasi mine and Mr Christian Rampa Luhembre, Vice-President of West Africa Division of Anglo Gold, Ashanti, called on him at the Manhyia Palace in Kumasi on Friday to bid him farewell.

The Asantehene stressed that the old system of rehabilitation of old equipment and machines was far fetched and did not suit operations at Obuasi mine. According to him the mine would pick up in the not too distant future when management of the company re-strategize.

Otumfuo Osei Tutu stressed the need for technology transfer as well as team work at the work place emphasizing that “the master-servant relations at the workplace will not help increase productivity.

“There are many challenges but with management and workers working together, you can turn the mine around,” he said.

Mr Miller said out of the production target of 390,000.02 ounces of Gold set last year, 357,000.02 was produced and called for improvement in capacity and upgrading of equipment to enable the 4,300 workers to meet the target.

Mr Luhembre, who assumed duty as the Vice-President of Guinea and Mali, introduced Mr Keith Faulkner, the new Managing Director for the Obuasi mine and Mr Dave Ingle, as his Deputy to Asantehene.

He told Asantehene that Anglo Gold was moving to a country structure in the Africa Region in order to deliver on their strategic objectives pointing out that the first step would be to split management of Ghana on one hand with Guinea and Mali on the other.

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