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Mining Minister challenges firms

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Minister of Mining Rashid Gaffar has urged mining firms in the country to enhance their Corporate Social Responsibility initiatives so that Malawians benefit from the operations.

Gaffar was speaking in Blantyre when he toured Mota Engil and Terrastone Quarries in Blantyre and Chiradzulu, respectively.

Gaffar said the quarrying firms could help communities by building schools, hospitals and constructing roads. He said apart from creating jobs for the communities, the firms should also consider investing in education in the country by constructing primary and secondary schools.

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“Much as we appreciate that you are here to do business, we would also like to see you investing in the communities you are operating in.

“The Tonse government led by President Lazarus Chakwera would like to see you building primary and secondary schools and even universities. You could start by building a primary school in the first five years, then a secondary school in the next five years and then a university,” he said.

District Commissioner for Blantyre, Bennett Nkasala, said apart from building the schools, the mining firms could also help the communities in improving the standard of roads in the communities in which they operate.

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“Again, we would like to see the welfare of the people around the quarries improving,” Nkasala said.

Mota Engil Site Manager, Alexander Monteiro, said his company is committed to working with government to uplift the welfare of Malawians.

He could, however, not indicate what Corporate Social Responsibility initiatives his company would undertake in the area.

For a long time, mining has been considered Malawi’s next biggest thing although the country has failed to transform its potential.

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