Newmont Ghana Gold Limited has been charged to pay workmen compensation to sub-contracted workers who were affected in the recent construction accident at its Ahafo mine.
The charge on the company to pay the compensation for all the affected workers, including sub-contracted workers, is to pay for its “failure to ensure the safety” of the workers.
“Newmont Ghana Gold Limited, for failure to ensure the safety of contractor employees working at the Ahafo Mine Site shall pay the fatally wounded and the injured employees the appropriate workmen compensation,” said the report by the Ministerial Committee of Inquiry into the accident that killed six workers.
Although the value of the compensation is yet to be declared, sources close to the Committee indicate that it could amount to thousands of dollars for the injured and the families of the deceased.
It is in addition to other punitive charges leveled against Newmont Ghana Gold Limited and it partners.
The fatalities occurred when the roof of a mine site tunnel that the sub-contracted employees were working on, collapsed.
The report, presented by the Committee of Inquiry set up by the Lands and Natural Resource Minister, John Peter Amewu, after the disaster last April, cited Newmont Ghana and its engineering agent DRA Ghana Limited to be fined more than $2.5 million as their responsibility for the fatal accident.
DRA Limited has also been banned from undertaking any construction project management on any mining site in the country.
According to an investigative report, DRA Limited is to be further punished for operating at the Ahafo site without Mining Services Operation Permit which is a breach of a mining regulation.
As part of the punitive measures, the company will for each day that it “had operated without the Mining Services Operating Permit, pay an additional fine of $200,000.”
On April 7, this year, Newmont Ghana Gold Limited reported an accident at its Ahafo Mine, which resulted in multiple fatalities. Six people died and four other workers of contracted company Consar Limited sustained various degrees of injuries.
Consar is a contractor working under the supervision of DRA Ghana Limited, an Engineering, Procurement, Construction and Management agent of Newmont constructing a Reclaim Tunnel as part of the Ahafo Mill Expansion (AME) Project.
The employees were reportedly involved in pouring a mixture of concrete at the Reclaim Tunnel when the two-level formwork structure at the west end of the tunnel failed.
Meanwhile, Newmont Ghana Limited says it will address all findings outlined in the investigative committee’s report on its Ahafo mine expansion project.
According to the company’s Regional Senior Vice President for Newmont Africa, Alwyn Pretorius, the firm will work to prevent the incident from recurring.
“We are all devastated by the loss of six colleagues and will carefully study the report so we may learn from the accident, address its findings and take steps to prevent this from happening again,” a statement released by the company said.
By ADR Daily Newsdesk