By Daily News Reporter
Dodoma — Barrick Gold Corporation has affirmed its pledge of 30 million US dollars in partnership with the Tanzanian government, towards the expansion of education infrastructure in Tanzania.
The pledge was made by the Barrick president and chief executive Mark Bristow during his meeting with President Samia Suluhu Hassan in Dodoma on Monday.
Called ‘The Barrick-Twiga Future Forward Education Programme’, the objective is to build 1,090 classrooms, 1,640 ablution blocks and 270 dormitories across 161 schools nationwide, helping to accommodate approximately 49,000 of the estimated 190,000 students who are expected to start their A-levels in July this year.
The first 10 million US dollars will be paid in April and the balance will be rolled out with the programme.
“We believe that education is key to the development of the country. Both the Bulyanhulu and North Mara gold mines continue to support the education sector through the building of classrooms and the improvement of education infrastructure around the mines, which has seen some of them consistently feature among the top schools in these regions,” Bristow said.
North Mara has already spent 1.9 million US dollars (about 4.5bn/-) on 87 primary and secondary schools in the Tarime District, 14 of which are the best-performing schools in the district.
Bulyanhulu has spent 1.8 million US dollars (about 4.2bn/-) on 80 educational projects around the mine and is currently building a Vocational Education Training College Centre in Bunango Village. Barrick’s investment around the mine has given 7,557 Tanzanian girls access to education in 2022.
“In addition to the company’s support of education, last year North Mara was officially recognised as Tanzania’s largest taxpayer and Bulyanhulu was awarded the Best Compliant Employer prize by the National Social Security Fund.
North Mara and Bulyanhulu also received the first and runner-up recognition awards, respectively, for the export of minerals and the generation of foreign currency. They’ve both come a very long way and we look forward to continuing that journey through our Twiga partnership with the government,”
Mr Bristow said since Barrick took over control of the mines in 2019, it had pumped 2.4 billion US dollars into the Tanzanian economy. Through their community development committees, the mines had invested more than 10 million US dollars in projects to improve healthcare, education, access to potable water and road infrastructur