Mr. Philip Yaw Oduro Amoako has been appointed the new Board Chairman for Owere Mines Limited to help resuscitate the medium- and long-term operations of its estimated 1.6 million ounces of gold resource covering 125 square kilometres at Konongo in the Ashanti Region.
Owere Mines is currently embarking on a total restructuring drive through care and maintenance. There is a paradigm shift in the company’s focus as it exhibits good industry-approved standards to achieve success.
Mr. P.Y.O. Amoako, whose appointment also positions him as a member of the newly-constituted Owere Mines Board, brings to the company a wealth of experience spanning over 32 years working with the Geological Survey Department (GSD) of Ghana and is a practicing Geoscientist. He was the Regional Director and subsequently National Director at GSD between 2001 and 2006. He holds an MSc in Geophysics and D.I.C. from the University of London – Imperial College of Sc. & Tech; BSc (Hons) in Physics and BSc (Ed) in Physics, Math and Education from the University of Cape Coast.
Since 1998, Mr. Amoako’s creativity, daring innovation and being ready to take risks positioned him as a key figure in the campaign for autonomous status of the GSD, and by 2004 he had assisted significantly in preparing the GSD Draft Amendment bill for parliament. This eventually resulted in the Ghana Geological Survey Authority Act 928 of 2016.
He has also been actively involved in donor-supported projects for the Geological Survey Department (GSD) since 1997; notably by the World Bank, the Nordic Development Fund and the European Union.
His areas of interest include application of geophysics in mineral/groundwater exploration, processing and interpretation of airborne geophysical data, environmental issues and disaster management/disaster risk reduction. He has also been an active member of the Geological Disaster Sub-committee of NADMO since 1997, and its chairman from 2002.
Mr. Amoako is an avid team player with effective communication skills, integrates and works well with both Ghanaians and foreigners for maximum output and, above all, lives by strict Christian principles
“The directors of Owere Mines are elated with this inclusion,” said Mr. Frederick Okine, a board-member, when asked to comment. He said: “Mr. Amoako’s nomination came up on the 5th of February 2018, and we can see clearly his involvement and distinction in field work, consulting, project management, office administration and management. He was confirmed in May 2018 after several consultations. We are in remarkably exciting times for growth of the company with such meritorious accolades”.
Owere Mines Limited was a Ghanaian/Australian-owned mining company that started its full operations in 2009 at the Asante Akyem North Municipality of the Ashanti Region. In 2011, the Australian company was bought out by LionGold Corp of Singapore, which subsequently in a Rights Issue in favour of the then-minority now hold a 0.01% stake in the mine.
Speaking with Mr. P. Y. O. Amoako on his appointment, he made some very critical revelations to B&FT that as an indigene of the Asante Akyem Central Municipal area, having grown up in Konongo-Odumase, he is filled with nostalgia upon reflection on the significance of Konongo Gold Mines – now Owere Mines – to the local community, especially in the 1950s and 60s.
He recounted how it offered substantial employment opportunities, recreational facilities (golf course, football park, tennis court and swimming pool); the African Club where dances, fora and concerts were held; and health facilities where his late maternal grandfather had his hernia operation in the late 50s. The local broadcasting station was located on the Mine’s premises, and Spelling ‘B’ competitions were held there. Local businesses were flourishing, community life was brisk, discipline was exceptional and the serene atmosphere at the Mine compound gave satisfaction.
He added that it gives him great pleasure and drive to be part of the success story regarding revival of the Mine to a prolific gold mine synonymous with being in a world-class district for gold production. As Board Chairman for the Majority Shareholder and the Gold Mine, “I look forward to a mine with the following: a reserve/resource base of about 5-10 million ounces, state of the art technology and equipment, adequate capital injection and resultant sustainable cash flow; the best human resource with training opportunities and infrastructure conforming to regulatory standards at all times; a significant plough-back ratio for local community development; and a focus on the local content”.
B&FT has been told that the above development can be achieved progressively through the years in four (4) main stages – the short-term (up to 10 months); the short- to medium-term (up to 36 months); the medium- to long-term (up to 60 months); and the long-term. The chairman intimated that he will immediately champion the institution of a 3 to 5-member interim technical team aside from management that serves as a consortium to:
1. Drive the implementation of all short-term restructuring efforts of Owere Mines
2. Evaluate all records and technical data
3. Evaluate all bids for equity participation and debt management to achieve medium-term goals
4. Assist management to bring the project through mine development and bankable feasibility to satisfy long-term projections
5. Recommend periodic amendments to our operating plan