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Cyanide Code Auditors Get Orientation   
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Joyce Aryee, Chief Executive Officer of the Ghana Chamber of Mines
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The International Cyanide Management Institute (ICMI) and the Ghana Chamber of Mines have organized a day’s workshop for code auditors on Implementing and Auditing the International Cyanide Management Code (ICMC) in Accra.

The workshop was intended to assist gold mining companies, cyanide producers and transporters and other stakeholders in their understanding of the Code’s expectations for the responsible management of cyanide. The cyanide management code was originally developed for gold mining operations. It addresses the production, transport, storage and use of cyanide and the decommissioning of cyanide facilities.

It also includes requirements related to financial assurance, accident prevention, emergency response, training, public reporting and stakeholder involvement and verification procedures. The focus of the workshop was on the practical issues associated with implementing and auditing the Code.

In her welcome address, Joyce Aryee, Chief Executive Officer of the Ghana Chamber of Mines, said “the workshop is a platform to learn about best practices for cyanide management and underscores the Chamber’s commitment to responsible environmental management and conservation.” She stated that even though the cyanide Code was a voluntary initiative for the gold mining industry, the great participation and the companies that were signatories demonstrated that the mining industry understood how important the Code was.

“By becoming a signatory, the company commits to adhere to the Code’s principles and implement its transport practices, and to have verification audits of its operations conducted by independent third-party auditors within three years of its initial application, and every three years thereafter,” Ms Aryee emphasised. The code, she added, addressed potential risks within the gold mining industry, including accidental leaks, release into the environment and exposure of mine workers to concentrated hydrogen cyanide gas.

It was developed to ensure the protection and safety of workers, the environment and communities adjacent to mining operations. It was intended to complement an operation’s existing environmental regulatory requirements, based on strict controls and practices for all aspects of cyanide use. Ms. Aryee alluded to the fact that safe working environment helps to maintain and motivate the human capital in order to increase productivity.

“Our producing member companies have formed an annual Mines Safety and First Aid Day celebration to help train and address the basic first aid, fire fighting and emergency response measures which forms (sic) part of our commitment to good corporate citizenship and social responsibility.”

She therefore encouraged participants “to carry this information back to their facilities, implement the code’s provisions and use the best management practices available to continue to operate in a safe and environmentally responsible manner.” Interpretive guidance was also provided on how auditors are to use their professional judgment in determining whether an operation is in compliance with the Code.
Source: Daily Guide

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