Francois Hardy, Regional Senior Vice President, Africa Operations at Newmont has revealed that all staff of the mining giant who contracted covid-19 have recovered.
In his message to end the 2020 , he sated that at the onset of the pandemic in March, the company put a robust management plan in place to keep the over 5,500 employees and contractors across Newmont’s Accra, Ahafo and Akyem sites safe.
“Majority of our employees and contractors had to work from home for the greater part of the year while the operations-critical workforce who had to work on site, worked within strict protocols. Although we recorded some cases within the year, I am happy to announce that all the affected employees fully recovered and returned to work safely.
“I am also pleased that we haven’t recorded new cases for a while now and have intensified safety protocols, especially as the world begins to experience what appears to be a second wave of the pandemic. We have adapted to our new normal and have largely met most of our targets for the year. Thank you for your support,” he said.
As a major contributor to Ghana’s socio-economic development, Newmont Ghana felt obliged to support the country’s COVID-19 management plan to ensure the safety of the citizenry.
So far, we have spent over $2Million (GHc 11million) on employee, community, national health and local economic resilience initiatives within the country.
“Out of this, we signed a GHc3Million Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Kumasi Centre for Collaborative Research in Tropical Medicine (KCCR) to support the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic. Among other things, KCCR who will receive a PCR Machine and ancillary equipment to complement their virology work, are also helping us to support the government hospitals in our host communities with upgrading their laboratories and testing capacity for COVID-19 and other infectious diseases. I am happy to inform you that work on these projects have advanced significantly and we are expecting to have fully functional laboratories in the Kenyasi District Hospital and the New Abirem District Hospital by January 2021.
“Other COVID-19 beneficiary institutions include the Noguchi Memorial Institute, Birim North Health Service, Birim North and Central District Assemblies, Asutifi North District Assembly, Health Service and District Police Service, Tano North Municipal Assembly and Health Service, Upper East and West Regional Hospitals, Navrongo Health Research Center, Northern Regional Health Directorate, Wa West District Hospital and the Zebilla District Hospital.
“Prior to approving the $2 Million support, Newmont Ghana spent an initial $620,000 package to augment the country’s fight against the pandemic including: Assisting the two national testing centers in Accra and Kumasi to purchase testing kits as well as health centers in our host communities to help their management plans, Contributed towards the Ghana Chamber of Mines’ $2 million donation to Ghana’s COVID-19 Trust Fund, Held public sensitization programmes on our community radio stations to educate local communities on preventive measures against the spread of the virus, Supported the payment of salaries of employees of some of our local contractors who were impacted during our initial scale back in operational activities. Embarked on radio school programmes for basic school pupils in our Ahafo and Akyem catchment areas who otherwise would not have had access to teaching and learning following the disruption in the school year due to the pandemic.
Under our National CSR initiative, Gold-4-Gold Reading initiative Partnered with United Way Ghana and the Ghana Library Authority to roll out the Home Literacy Programme to minimize the educational impacts of COVID-19 on children in the Ayawaso District. Over a six-week period, 200 children from the Al-Waleed Comprehensive Basic School and Nima Cluster of Schools were engaged by volunteers in small groups and taught to read through interactive activities.”