Obuasi mine launches ten-year socio-economic development plan
After a comprehensive stakeholder consultation process, AngloGold Ashanti’s Obuasi mine, in 2022, launched a ten-year socio-economic development plan (SEDP) which encapsulates a clear strategy to ensure Obuasi mine and its host communities reap sustained benefits from the mining business.
Engagements were facilitated by a third party and consultations were held with key internal stakeholders at the mine site, regional and corporate offices to ensure AngloGold Ashanti’s business strategy is reflected in the SEDP.
After a four-month intensive engagement programme, the SEDP was launched in August 2022 at a development partnership symposium, attended by development NGOs, bilateral partners, and representatives from the private sector. The SEDP articulates the social investment strategy for Obuasi mine for the period until 2031, and runs in parallel with the mine’s community trust fund. In addition, the SEDP will be supporting the municipal and district assemblies’ socio-economic improvement and well-being programmes, and is supportive of the traditional capitals of the relevant Paramount and Divisional Stools.
The 10-year plan seeks three intermediate outcomes:
A diversified and sustained
Quality health services; education; skills development; access to water, sanitation, and hygiene; community infrastructure; industrialisation; agriculture, and business development and entrepreneurship are being targeted to underpin the outcomes required.
“In a further effort to improve access to quality health services we have entered a four-year partnership with the German Development Implementing Agency in Ghana, Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH,” says Mr Asubonteng. The focus is on community health programmes and building capacity, equipment, and screening activities. AngloGold Ashanti Ghana has already expanded and rehabilitated the Anyinam Clinic into a sub-district health centre to provide primary healthcare to surrounding areas.
AngloGold Ashanti Ghana’s partnership with the Otumfuo Osei Tutu II Foundation and Ghana Education Service plans to distribute 34,000 copies of numeracy and literacy books to all public basic schools in Obuasi. Critical to ensuring quality education is closing the infrastructure gap and to create conducive learning environments: the Sanso Community was identified as a beneficiary project to build a nine-unit classroom block with WASH, ICT, and other ancillary facilities by November 2023.
Vocational and trade-based training is a critical component of the SEDP’s educational interventions. Efforts are being made to include the youth in Obuasi in apprenticeship training in auto mechanics, auto electricals, welding, and fabrication.
Underpinning our sanitation and hygiene interventions is a focus on providing potable water to the communities in our tenements. During the year, AngloGold Ashanti Ghana provided water systems to four communities with plans for five more communities in 2023, while the “Keep Obuasi Clean” campaign promotes hygiene with a monthly clean-up exercise. This is jointly enforced by the Environmental Protection Agency, traditional authorities, and local government. Similar programmes are being run in the basic schools where pupils will serve as ambassadors to ensure a clean Obuasi for years to come.
All these SEDP interventions are approached with due regard for equity, diversity, and inclusion, which are integral to the process, making provision to support women, youth and physically challenged community members.
Continuous implementation of the ten-year plan is aligned with the business sustainability performance of the mine and will be built into the annual business plan for budgeting purposes. Through these programmes, the SEDP supports AngloGold Ashanti’s aim to establish sustainable businesses that support livelihoods long after the life of the mine.