Business News of 2013-12-08

Newmont hands over upgraded water system

Newmont Golden Ridge Limited on Thursday handed over a GHc3,563 upgraded water system to communities in its project area in Birim North District at a ceremony in New Abirem in the Eastern Region.

The extensive water expansion project formed part of an overarching influx mitigation initiative known as the Influx Management Plan (IMP).

It was anticipated that as the Akyem Mine progressed, a rapid influx of job seekers and their families will add up to the existing population, thereby putting more pressure on the existing social amenities.

The purpose of developing an IMP was, therefore, to provide a plan to mitigate the environmental, economic and social impacts associated with influx of people to the mine host communities.

Present at the ceremony were officials from the Assembly, traditional leaders, Newmont management, local board members, the project consultant and contractor.

Mr Oduro-Kwarteng Marfo, External Relations Manager of Newmont Golden Ridge Limited, said works completed under the project and handed over to communities included 280m capacity high level water storage tanks.

Others were the excavation and laying of 1,349m and 19,740m of transmission and distribution pipe lines respectively, as well as the construction of two new pump houses and the installation of two additional submersible pumps.

Three dedicated transformers had also been provided to ensure constant power supply to the New Abirem/Afosu/Mamanso system, he said.

Mr Oduro-Kwarteng indicated that there was also rehabilitation of two boreholes which prior to the expansion works by Newmont, were yielding 12m/hr and 6m/hr but now yielding 26m/hr and 11m/hr respectively. “These two boreholes serve the existing 100m tank at Akyem Afosu Township,” he said.

He indicated that as part of the upgrade, two new boreholes were also drilled to augment water supply, saying, “their yields are 15m/hr and that they supply to a newly constructed 280m High Level Tank in the Afosu community.”

According to him, the water system at Ntronang was also expanded to cover newly developed areas by providing a mechanized borehole and that laying of 540 m and 4540m of transmission and distribution pipe lines respectively.

“In addition to these projects, mechanized water systems have also been completed for the New Abirem/Afosu Senior High School and the New Abirem Government Hospital,” he said.

Mr Oduro-Kwarteng indicated that Newmont would continue to remain a significant contributor not just to the rapid socio-economic development of its immediate environs or district of operation but the country as a whole, and that plans were far advanced to build an ultra-modern surgical ward for the local Government Hospital.

The beneficiary communities through their community heads expressed appreciation to Newmont as a key development partner but asked for further support from the company and other benevolent organisations.