First Quantum Minerals has partnered with Anglo American Exploration Zambia to construct a real-time PCR COVID-19 testing laboratory at Kansanshi Mine Hospital in Solwezi District of North-Western Province.
[AFPRwire, Fri Nov 27 2020] First Quantum Minerals has partnered with Anglo American Exploration Zambia to construct a real-time PCR COVID-19 testing laboratory at Kansanshi Mine Hospital in Solwezi District of North-Western Province.
The modern laboratory was built to increase the testing capacity in North-Western Province. Anglo American provided the equipment and consumables, while First Quantum built and will staff the facility.
Speaking at the opening of Ba Mingilo Molecular Laboratory in Solwezi on Thursday, First Quantum's Kansanshi Mine Assistant General Manager John Gladston said that through its partnership with the Provincial Health Authorities, First Quantum was keeping its employees, their families, relatives and friends healthy and free from COVID-19.
We have been working in partnership with Anglo American and other stakeholders to prioritise the health and safety of personnel and focus on measures to prevent the transmission of COVID-19 among the workforce and communities surrounding our operations, said Mr Gladston.
He said that First Quantum will employ the clinical staff at the Kansanshi Mine Hospital to run the laboratory, to protect the health of mine workers who operate the economic engine room of the nation.
Anglo American Geophysicist Michelo Shalwindi said: We are pleased to be supporting the Zambian Government's efforts to increase COVID-19 testing capacity in Zambia. This initiative will ensure that the communities close to where we are exploring have access to rapid and high-quality testing services crucial in helping manage the spread of COVID-19.
Test kits have been distributed within the province: 5,000 for First Quantum, 5,000 for Anglo American and 5,000 for the community.
Permanent Secretary of Technical Services at the Zambian Ministry of Health Dr Kennedy Malama thanked First Quantum and Anglo American for their support in the fight against the pandemic and said he was pleased the two mining houses had demonstrated a strong partnership linked to Government's support.
First Quantum has long made healthcare a priority in all the communities where it operates. The challenge, especially in less prosperous regions, is where to draw the line between problems that the company has a responsibility to help address, and those that remain within the mandate of the public healthcare system.
First Quantum has spent over US$100 million on its sustainability and community development programmes to improve the health and the quality of life for its employees, their families and their immediate communities.
About First Quantum Minerals Ltd
First Quantum Minerals Ltd is a global metals and mining company producing mainly copper, gold and zinc. The company's assets are in Zambia, Spain, Mauritania, Australia, Finland, Turkey, Panama, Argentina and Peru.
In 2019, First Quantum globally produced 702,000 tonnes of copper, 257,000 ounces of gold and 18,000 tonnes of zinc.
In Zambia it operates the Kansanshi mine - the largest copper mine in Africa by production - and smelter and the Sentinel mine in Kalumbila.
The company is listed on the Lusaka and Toronto stock exchanges.
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