Ashanti-Iduapriem Limited has begun the implementation of its Malaria Control Programme for its employees and host communities.
Phase one of the programme saw the distribution of three sets of insecticide treated nets to employees and dependants whereas phase two will focus on community education and distribution of free insecticide treated nets to households within 16 host communities.
The move formed part of the company’s initiative to complement government’s efforts in eradicating malaria.
The programme is in partnership with the Municipal Health Directorate of the Ghana Heath Service of the Tarkwa Nsuaem Municipal Assembly and the UK Department of International Development (DFID and under the auspices of Johns Hopkins Centre for Communication Programs –Ghana.
Under the programme, AngloGold Ashanti-Iduapriem is committed to distribute 12,500 mosquito treated nets and undertake indoor residual spraying exercise in its host communities with Johns Hopkins Centre for Communications supporting the community outreach programme with educational materials, training of peer educators and 40 host community volunteers.
Other strategies yet to be rolled out under the programme include indoor residual spraying exercise which will further augment the controls the company is taking to end malaria among employees, dependants and host communities.
The Ghana Health Service in Tarkwa has also supported the programme with additional 5,000 insecticide treated nets for distribution to the communities to benefit an estimated population of 6,750 in 1,350 households within the municipality.
To sustain the outcomes and benefit beyond the project implementation, the project will be mainstreamed into the Municipal Directorate’s Malaria Control Programme and build the capacity of community governance structures to continue education on malaria control for continuity.
The company has already invested GH¢ 238,410 in the program as part of the its community investment.
The Managing Director of AngloGold Ashanti-Iduapriem, Mr. Jasper Musadaidzwa at the launch of the programme at Adieyie lamented that malaria was a growing concern on the mine and its immediate host communities.
He disclosed that new cases of malaria amongst employees and contractors of the mine increased from 172 cases in 2015 to 236 in 2016 while a very alarming cases of malaria for the first half of 2017 stands at 218.
He explained that the mine was aligning its health targets to Sustainable Development Goal 3 (SDG 3) targeted at ending the epidemic of malaria and other communicable disease, adding that his outfit is committed to ensuring that employees and communities are healthy so as to enhance productivity in their various occupation.
Story: From Seth Ameyaw Danquah, Takoradi, W/R