In line with the Company’s purpose to create value and improve lives through sustainable and responsible mining, Newmont welcomes all well-planned input to enhance mining’s benefits to local communities.
Paul Sowley, Newmont Ghana’s Senior Director for Sustainability and External Relations, in response to allegations in certain media outlets based on reports developed by non-governmental organizations (NGOs), WACAM and Ford Foundation said “Protecting and promoting the health and welfare of our employees and local communities is a top priority.”
“We are currently studying the accuracy of the reports and will provide further information once we complete the review,” said Mr. Sowley. “Our review will include following up with the reports’ authors to better understand their data collection, analysis and assessment methods, which seem to lack the scientific rigour to support their conclusions.”
Newmont Ghana’s mitigation programmes in Ahafo, namely the Agricultural Improvement and Land Access Programme, Vulnerable Peoples’ Programme and Skills Development Improvement Programme, have supported more than 10,000 people. In addition, the Company has installed new wells, monitored ground water supplies, improved sanitation and worked closely with local communities on monitoring and protecting water quality.
In addition, the Newmont Ahafo Development Foundation which has accrued more than Gh¢54.2million, is positively enhancing lives with the award of over 8,000 scholarships, 100 infrastructure projects (including schools, libraries, health facilities and potable water projects). The Foundation also has given out micro-credit support to approximately 1,500 beneficiaries, most of them women.
Newmont has also undertaken deliberate efforts to empower women in all spheres of development. From its inception, the Ahafo mine instituted a gender mainstreaming policy to guide all social development interventions.
In addition to the formation of a Women Consultative Committee, which has had tremendous impact on women in the 10 host communities, there has been an appreciable level of inclusion of women in the local economy. It is worthy to note that more than 40 percent of the scholarships and 98 percent of the micro-credit beneficiaries have been women.
Newmont recognizes that there remain opportunities to improve lives and mitigate impacts. Through ongoing, transparent and responsible partnership with local communities, the company will help create value and improve lives through sustainable and responsible mining.