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Business News of Wednesday, 19 March 2014

Source: Daily Guide

GHACEM delegation calls on minister

A delegation from the country’s foremost cement manufacturer, GHACEM Limited, has paid a courtesy call on the Minister of Environment, Science Technology and Innovation, Dr. Joe Oteng Agyei.

The call was to officially notify the ministry about the ongoing 2nd edition of GHACEM’S Quarry Life Awards (QLA) Campaign, and to also thank the ministry for immensely supporting the maiden edition last year.

The delegation, including Kwabena Larbi Addo, the QLA National Coordinator and Solomon Ayiah, the Communications Coordinator, were received on behalf of the Minister by the Chief Director, Dr. Sylvester Anemana, and the Director of Finance and Administration, Kwasi Agyei Tabi.

The QLA Campaign is an annual competition organised by the Heidelberg Cement (HC) Group and its subsidiaries across the globe, including GHACEM Limited of Ghana, to source ideas towards the effective regeneration and management of biodiversity in its mining sites across the world.

Essentially, the campaign seeks to reward the most effective ideas on possible ways to reclaim lands in areas where the HC Group operates globally.

As an award scheme, the QLA is organised first at the national level after which the top three winners from each country are selected to compete at the international level.

In a remark, Mr. Ayiah announced that 35 proposals had so far been presented for consideration in this year’s competition.

He said a jury would select the five strongest proposals and give each researcher an amount of Euros 500 to commence work, and additional funds to cover other expenses of the research as and when necessary.

Mr. Ayiah noted that the first, second and third national winners for this year would be rewarded with 5000, 3000 and 1500 Euros respectively, and the global winner will get 30,000 Euros.

He was, however, convinced that this year’s national winners would emulate the example of last year’s winner, Paul K. Nsiah of the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST), who emerged second at the international competition.

“We will even up our game this year to ensure one of Ghana’s top finalists emerges winner globally.

For his part, Mr. K. Larbi Addo described the enthusiasm for this year’s national competition as impressive “compared to last year,” and was optimistic that the researchers would come out with unique, innovative ideas on land reclamation.

He said to ensure the success of the 2014 event, the jury had visited and elicited the buy-in of the geology, mining, biodiversity and environmental science faculties of all the public universities in the country.

“And after the top five proposals have been selected, we will open our various mining sites to the contestants to start their research,” he noted.

On behalf of the Minister, the Chief Director commended GHACEM Ltd and its mother company, Heidelberg Group, for “sustaining this research initiative and making it an annual event.”

He disclosed that as an initiative on land reclamation after quarrying, the Ministry will study the QLA module to see its suitability for adoption and possible legislation to guide mining activities in the country.

“As a ministry, we will do further studies on the QLA and when we are clear on everything, support it by legislation and make it a standard norm for all mining companies to comply with,” he indicated.