Newmont Mine to affect portions of Sunyani-Kumasi highway
Newmont Goldcorp has affirmed its readiness to divert the Afrisipakrom -Techire road, as the company finalises processes to commence actual mining on its Ahafo North concessional area.
The Company’s Ahafo North concession is expected to cover 4,000 hectares of land around five major towns – Yamfo, Adrobaa, Susuanso, Terchire and Afrisipakrom in the Tano North Municipality.
It will include construction of a stand-alone Ore Processing Plant, and ancillary facilities, such as sediment control structures, ore, waste rock and top soil stockpiles, tailings storage facility and water storage facilities.
According to the multi-national mining company, the diversion of the about 11- kilometre Afrisipakrom-Terchire road on the Sunyani-Kumasi highway, is necessary because of the huge impact of the mine on the area.
The Company, therefore, pledged to construct a standard road network that would connect to the main highway, and facilitate easy movements of the people and their socio-economic activities.
Mr Stephen Petrofes, the Regional Project Director, Ahafo North Mine, Newmont Goldcorp, assured people whose life would be directly or indirectly affected by the Mine’s operations of adequate compensation packages.
“The diversion is a necessary measure to avoid interferences with the operation and ensure the safety of the road users”.
He was speaking at a public hearing on the scoping report and draft terms of reference of the Mine held at Yamfo on Tuesday.
Organised by the Environmental Protection Authority (EPA), the hearing was aimed at sensitizing the local communities on the report and the impact of the mine in the area.
Mr Petrofes said the proposed Ahafo North project was one of the key growth projects for Newmont Goldcorp Company.
“Our purpose as a business entity is to create value and improve lives through sustainable and responsible mining and in delivering on this commitment we are guided by our established values of safety, integrity, sustainability, inclusion and responsibility”, he said.
“We have demonstrated over the years with our current Ghana operations that we practice and maintain high environmental standards and performance and will be using our learnings from these operations to continue to provide exemplary environmental performance with the Ahafo North operation”.
“Newmont Goldcorp’s ultimate aim is to ensure that this project creates shared value in the areas of employment and other socio-economic benefits to our communities and the country at large, in line with our purpose of creating value and improving lives through sustainable and responsible mining”.
Meanwhile, residents in the area have called on Newmont Ahafo North project to engage more locals in their operations.
They noted that the consequences of the mine was enormous, and the company must also provide alternative livelihoods opportunities for the people.
In an open forum, most of the residents who spoke said they have learnt great lessons from other mining communities, and called on the company to do more to enhance their socio-economic livelihoods.
Some of the traders selling on the highway said they were unhappy with the diversion of the road as it would affect their economic activities.