Jwaneng Mine commits P7.8bn towards citizen empowerment

Baitshepi Sekgweng

Debswana’s Jwaneng mine has committed P7.8 billion to support its Citizen Economic Empowerment Programs (CEEP).

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This substantial investment is allocated with P5.8 billion for operational expenditure (opex) and P2 billion for capital expenditure (capex).

During a recent media tour, Jwaneng Mine General Manager Koolatotse Koolatotse called on corporate organizations and the business community to show support for local manufacturers.

He emphasized the mine’s commitment to sourcing personal protective equipment from local suppliers and working collaboratively to improve product quality.

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Koolatotse underlined the importance of nurturing local businesses, drawing parallels with developed nations that initially supported homegrown companies. “We don’t buy our personal protective equipment from outside, we only buy locally. We are patient with our suppliers, if we find some discrepancies in the supplies we just call them and advise them accordingly on where to improve. All these developed countries started somewhere with their home grown companies and they gave them a chance. So we will train them, we will make them. We looked for them we couldn’t find them, we looked harder and still couldn’t get them and we started manufacturing them,” said Koolatotse proudly, further emphasizing that they also ‘manufacture human diamonds’ in Jwaneng Mine.

Jwaneng Mine’s CEEP initiative aims to create nearly 20,000 job opportunities, with 842 jobs already generated to date.

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Koolatotse explained that the program unfolds in two phases, the first of which focused on ensuring all jobs went to citizens.

The second phase addresses the challenge of local companies having to import raw materials, with the goal of fostering domestic production. “We want all money from the mine to end in the hands of Batswana but all along it was not the case. Phase 1 was to give all jobs to Batswana which we managed to achieve. Phase 2 was initiated after we realised a challenge whereby all these local companies that we engaged have to buy raw materials from outside of Botswana. So now the aim is to facilitate manufacturing of raw materials locally because all those industries will hire more Batswana,” he said.

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As part of its efforts to localize mining operations, Jwaneng mine has transitioned away from Majwe Mining, which was responsible for the Cut 9 project in 2021, and Komatsu, which handled machinery servicing.

These responsibilities have been reassigned to local companies Tlou Drilling, Medupu Drilling, and Debswana subsidiary Naledi Mining Services.

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