LENTSWELETAU: Minergy Limited, the company developing the Masama Coal Mine due to open next February, says at least 450 jobs will be created at the operation, located at Media village in Kweneng East.
At present, the mine employs 190 people and construction is ramping up for the start of production next year. Masama Coal Mine will also feature a coal wash plant.
Speaking during a tour of the mine this week, Minergy CEO, Andre Boje, said recruitment would prioritise Batswana from the surrounding community. “We want to employ as many people as possible and empower the community of Medie and Lentsweletau. When we commence operations next year we intend to create 450 direct jobs,” he said, adding that the goal was to have at least 90% citizen staff. According to the CEO, Masama has engaged local companies for certain works as construction speeds up. The mining contract was awarded to Jarcon, a joint venture between IPP, a South African company and Giant Plant, a Botswana company, while Pentalin Processing was awarded the Build Own Operate & Transfer contract for the wash plant.
While Medie is not electrified, Boje said the clinic, school and Kgotla would all receive power when Masama is connected to the grid. Minergy has also established offices in Medie and Lentsweletau, a larger village 15 kilometres away. Lentsweletau chief, Kgosi Morulaganyi Makgasane told BusinessWeek the mine was a welcome development that would uplift the area. “We are grateful that the
Minergy is developing Masama Coal Mine, which early next year will be Botswana’s second colliery and the first open cast coal mine in the country.
The mine and associated coal wash plant will involve the export of an initial one million tonnes per annum into South Africa. Masama is estimated to hold 390-million tonnes of coal.
Once operational, the mine expects to produce 150,000 tonnes of coal per month, an amount that will be increased annually.
“We will be producing 1.2 million tonnes of coal annually and this will increase to three million tonnes per year as time goes by. Minergy is strategically placed with a quality product, an outstanding resource and capable management in an environment of rising coal prices all underpinned by international demand,” the CEO said.