The maiden edition of the Women in Mining and Energy Awards (WIMEA) came off successfully in Accra last weekend.
The event is a platform to promote awareness on gender inequality, diversity and inclusion and also to publicly recognise and celebrate companies championing diversity and inclusion; and individual women who have contributed to the development of the mining and energy industry in Ghana.
The awards also seek to promote achievement of the SDG goal 5 (Gender Inequality) and 10 (Reduced inequalities).
Speaking at the event, the Chief of Staff at the Presidency, Akosua Frema Osei-Opare, said any initiative aimed at enhancing the representation and development of women is worth supporting.
Over the last two decades, she said the importance of gender diversity in the socio-economic transformation of Ghana has received much attention, but more still needs to be done to improve gender diversity, inclusion and inequality issues.
“As women, it is our responsibility to look at how we can attract more women into these industries and retain those already working there,” she added.
The Minister for Gender, Children and Social Protection, Sarah Adwoa Safo, in a statement read on her behalf, called for stronger partnerships to create an all-inclusive environment that promotes integration and collaboration for women to position themselves for the future in mining and energy sectors.
“Our presence here is a testimony to the fact that, achieving gender equality in the mining and energy sector, is a shared goal and a national priority. Therefore, as we have gathered here today, it is paramount we push forth to innovations and campaigns that will strategically position us as women to meaningfully contribute to the provision of reliable and renewable energy as well as innovative practices in mining,” she said.
The awards celebrate the role and achievements of women and companies that have made significant contributions to the two sectors. The ceremony also sought to create awareness of the importance and need for the inclusion of women in these industries.
Some of the winners on the night include Baker Hughes Ghana, which won the Excellence in Diversity Programmes and Performance award, Goldfields Ghana Ltd as Employer of the Year Championing Diversity and Inclusion, and the Electricity Company of Ghana as Best Company in Women Empowerment Initiatives.
Outstanding Services Company of the Year went to Consolidated Shipping Agencies Ltd, Karpowership Ghana was adjudged Best Company in Mentorship Programmes and Initiatives, while the winner of Best Company Women Network Group, went to Goldfields Ghana.
In the individual awards category, Jane Reason Ahadzie, CEO of JRA Cosmetics Ltd, was adjudged the overall WIMEA Woman of the Year, Oghogho Dixon, MD, Baker Hughes, Exemplary Leadership Award (Energy), Chief Operations Officer Of The Year went to Linda Vasnani, COO, Consolidated Shipping Agencies and Catherine Kuupol Kutor, Metallurgical Manager, Gold Fields Ghana Ltd, as WIMEA Personality of the Year.
Other winners include Elinam A. Horgli, deputy MD, JK Horgle Transport & Co. Ltd, who took home the Rising Star in Energy, Gender Diversity Champion of the Year, Rosemond Asamoa-Frimpong, who is Gender Diversity Manager at ECG, Sandra Amarquaye, Corporate Communication Manager, Karpower Ghana as the winner of Sustainability and External Relations Champion award and Dr.Georgette B. Sakyi-Addo CEO, Georgette Barnes Ltd., as CEO of the Year.
Mrs. AHADZIE, CEO of JRA Cosmetics Ltd, also received the Special Recognition award for her exemplary commitment, passion and success in women empowerment, gender diversity and inclusion.
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The communications specialist of Karpowership Ghana, Sandra Amarquaye has been honoured at the Women in Mining and Energy Awards.
She was awarded the Sustainability and External Relations Champion for how she has managed the company’s corporate affairs over the past year.
The award ceremony held at Movenpick Hotel in Accra recognized the outstanding achievements, contributions and value additions of women in the mining and energy sectors.
It also celebrated the role and achievements of women who have made significant contributions to the two sectors. The award ceremony also sought to create awareness of the importance and need for the inclusion of women in these industries.
Ms Amarquaye is a trained communications professional who has previously worked with TV3 and the Multimedia Group Limited.
As one of the employees who begun with the company in Ghana, Sandra Amarquaye set up and established policies, strategies, and action plans for the activities of the Communications Unit of the company to drive the corporate vision.
Sandra has continued over the past five years to successfully undertake and implement the relevant CSR, media, stakeholder and community engagement actions and strategies which have ensured that the image and relations of the company have remained perfect.
In recognition of her initiative for action, innovative thinking, and the fresh ideas she has introduced and that has contributed greatly towards the success of the company over the period, she was awarded the Karpowership Ace of Initiative in 2018.
She was also nominated as an emerging star in 2019 at the Ghana Energy Awards.
Under her watch as a communication specialist, Karpower has introduced a number of corporate social responsibility initiatives to support communities.
The initiatives include the Karpowership welcome back to school, Karpowership bursary, Karpowership Mentorship Programme which brings students in touch with accomplished industry personalities to help groom the students.
Over 400 students have benefitted so far from the initiative which is being rolled out in collaboration with the Ministry of Education and the Ministry of Gender, Children and Social Protection.
The company has also recently introduced the Girl Power Initiative which seeks to offer girl children practical vocational skills that can help them earn extra income.
As part of the initiative, more than 30 females have been trained in the making of fashion accessories.
Karpowership Ghana was on the award night also adjudged the “best company in mentorship program
The Nsawam Adoagyiri MP, Frank Annoh-Dompreh has called on Parliament to expedite action in establishing the Renewable Energy Authority to promote exploitation of the sector to aid economic recovery in the country post Covid-19.
According to him, a well-resourced and properly constituted Renewable Energy Authority is much needed to drive Ghana’s renewable agenda and support post-pandemic recovery through targeted and deliberate action.
In a speech delivered on the floor of Parliament, Annoh-Dompreh who is also the Chief Whip of the Majority Caucus in Parliament stated that Ghana would be joining other African countries such as Egypt, Morocco, Kenya and South Africa among others who have expressed strong commitment towards accelerated use of modern renewable energy and are leading energy transition efforts.
“Kenya is set to install 1.4 gigawatts, Ethiopia is installing almost 570 megawatts while South Africa installs 3.9 gigawatts of renewable energy,” he said.
According to him, such huge investments in alternate safer energy sources would not only significantly help these countries meet their long-term climate goals as stated in the Paris Agreement, but would foster growth in the economy through job creation and opportunities.
Citing Kenya’s renewable energy drive he said, “This East African nation is already on track to meet or exceed its Paris Agreement pledge. It stated goal is to achieve 100% of renewable energy power generation by 2030 complemented by a diverse technology mix.
“Harnessing renewable energy in Kenya will not only enable the country to meet its long-term climate goals but will ultimately help realise its ambition of becoming a middle-income country by the end of the decade.”
He added that taking into consideration the job losses occasioned by the advent of the coronavirus in the country, the creation of the Renewable Energy Authority to expedite exploitation of the sector would help alleviate the unemployment conundrum the country is currently facing.
He explained that, “Renewable energy is also set to boost job creation in the country.
“According to a ‘job census’ report by Power for All, a non-governmental organisation, growth in the renewable energy sector is already having a positive spinoff as the sector’s workforce is now comparable with traditional power grids and utilities.
“The sector currently employs around 4,000 informal workers compared to 10,000 employed across the country’s traditional energy sectors. Jobs in renewable energy are expected to grow by 100% in the next four years.”
Annoh-Dompreh said despite President Akufo-Addo’s immense commitment to diversifying renewables through the establishment of several large renewable energy projects, government’s failure to create the Renewable Energy Authority has left a rather large vacuum in Ghana’s renewable resource drive.
“Without prejudice to the immense contributions of our stakeholders in the energy sector, right from the Ministry responsible for Energy and the Energy Commission of Ghana, to representatives in the community of academia who continue to provide scientific research support towards the development of renewable energy, it is undeniable that the absence of the Renewable Energy Authority belies all of our achievements under renewable energy in Ghana,” he stated.
According to him, setting up the Authority would “facilitate implementation of the renewable energy master plan which among other benefits would expedite the installation of1363.63 MW of electricity (with grid connected systems totaling 1094.63 MW.)
“This has the capacity to create 220,000 job opportunities, and carbon savings of about 11 million tonnes of CO2 by 2030.”
He has further called for all state institutions to be installed with solar panels to afford space to industry and other critical areas of the economy.