Locally grown, family-owned and operated and built with locally sourced materials are some words that have been used to describe the Geita Gold Mining Limited (GGML) employing over 90 per cent of Tanzanians working at the mine instead of it coming with foreign staff.
Looked at keenly, the company hiring from the local talent pool signals to the communities and country at large that it’s a true citizen of the area.
It is interested in their growth, the well-being of the citizens and the health of the local economy, because citizenship must begin at home, after all.
These were some of the descriptions aired recently, when the Deputy Minister, Prime Minister’s Office (Work, Youth, Employment and People with Disabilities), Patrobas Katambi hailed the company for providing employment opportunities to more than 90 per cent of Tanzanians in the mine as well as creating vacancies for others to get tenders and sell products and services to the company.
If anything, to go by, the locals understand the culture in which the company comes to operate and live with. That means they can navigate potential problems with greater ease.
That usually translates to higher productivity and a decrease in financial loss, if any. On the note, one of the biggest advantages of hiring locally is that the company creates jobs and provides training opportunities that wouldn’t otherwise be available to the residents, who live close to the mine.
This in a way also helps keep money in the surrounding communities and strengthens the local economy.
Elaborating, he also praised the company for emerging as the winner on innovations and being the most attractive pavilion displaying workplace health and safety at the exhibition held at Tumbaku grounds in Morogoro region from 26 to 30 April this year.
Mr Katambi made the reservations after visiting the company’s booth in the exhibition organized by the Occupational Health and Safety Agency (OSHA) in the region that also coincided with the World Labour Day, marked nationally in the area.
“I should especially congratulate them for reducing injuries and disability at work, work-related illnesses, but also ensuring that all working environments are safe to the extent that workers return home when safe.
“I am happy to see that the entire pavilion and even within the company, a large percentage of employees are our fellow Tanzanians, so we are increasingly emphasizing that Tanzanians be given priority in all workplaces,” he said.
He noted that when a foreigner holds a job position, it means that the skills are rare and therefore, he/she should train a Tanzanian within a duration as expected by the sixth phase government under President Samia Suluhu Hassan.
Mr Katambi further said: “She has directed me to make sure at all times that if there are foreigners with skills, the expertise should be passed to a Tanzanian.”
He said that GGML has become a role model in the purchase of local goods and services, which in turn raises the livelihoods of the surrounding communities, especially through the local content program, adding that things that are available in the country should be bought here in order to increase liquidity in the country and not have a lot of money go abroad.
He further praised the company saying: “Hiring locally ensures that local staff have a deep understanding of the operations of the mine, making it easier to bring in new business. In addition, a local hire will likely be more interested to invest in helping the company to succeed since it benefits their community.
“But you have also considered the safety of the environment in general so that we do not find people with disabilities caused by mines, even our environment and land remain safe, so you Tanzanians who are there are representatives to ensure the safety of us, living beings,” he said.
On his part, GGML Manager responsible for safety at workplace, Isack Senya said that more than 3000 people visited the pavilion and learned various things about the technologies used to work in a healthy and safe environment.
He said this year GGML brought technological and modern equipment to enable the company to emerge as the best company with innovation in the equipment.
He also promised the Deputy Minister that they will continue implementing various projects that help the community get rid of poverty as well as get better services in collaboration with the government.
Among other things, the Minister, Prime Minister’s Office (Work, Youth, Employment and People with Disabilities, Prof. Joyce Ndalichako also passed by the pavilion and congratulated the company for being an important stakeholder in complying with the requirements of the law emphasizing health and safety in the workplace work.