Protect environment as required, mining firms tasked

GEITA: THE Minister of State and Vice President for Labour and Environment, Selemani Jafo has directed all mining companies in the country to comply with environmental procedures and laws to help the country and globe to deal with the climate change crisis.

Equally, he instructed the companies to learn how Geita Gold Mining Limited (GGML) implements the environmental policy as it is the exemplary mining firm that fully complies with the Environmental Protection Act.

Making the revelation in Geita Town yesterday, while speaking to journalists after planting trees and visiting the stalls of the sixth Mining Technology Exhibition that is ongoing at the Bombambili-EPZ field in Geita Region, he noted that in his capacity as the minister focusing on environment, he carefully monitors the activities of mining companies to protect the surroundings, especially considering that gold production also causes the presence of metals dangerous to the environment.

He added: “But of all the companies that are committed to preserving the environment, GGML is the one, so I want to encourage you to continue with the same spirit to ensure that the environment is taken care of.

“As a consequence of developing the economy through minerals (extraction), but we don’t take care of the environment, we will have serious consequences… remember that climate change is a global phenomenon. No nation is safe from climate change, temperatures are rising every day.

“Let’s continue to grow the economy but protect the environment. GGML remains a key stakeholder and we the government need stakeholders like you to work together to ensure that the country moves forward.”

Commenting, the Minister for Minerals, Anthony Mavunde said he would monitor the sector to ensure that all mining activities comply with the Geita’s Environmental Protection Policies.

In response, GGML Environmental Manager, Mhando Yusuph, said that the mine has an environmental policy that covers three main areas namely prevention of pollution, compliance with environmental legislation and sustainable improvement of the environment.

He added: “Therefore, everything that is done at the mine is based on environmental protection. We consider environmental management within the mine for all mining activities and ensure that we do not pollute water sources such as rivers and ponds within the mine.

“To ensure that this policy is followed, we regularly test the water outside and inside the mine (footprint). But remember that mining involves the removal of tree resources, so when an area is no longer used, we plant trees.”

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