BY Ange de la Victoire DUSABEMUNGU
Kigali-Rwanda: On Thursday, 18 November 2021, MINEFIELD Group Ltd has officially launched its activities that will bring changes in the mining industry in Rwanda.
Minefield Group Ltd is a professional group of Engineers whose core business is to establish and operate “Workplace-based Mineral Processing Training Centers (W-BMPTCS)” with a view to providing technical and vocational training services at the level of Mine Concessions, Quarry sites and Mineral Processing Centres in Rwanda.
The inaugural event which was held at the University of Rwanda-College of Science and Technology, was attended by various stakeholders including the Rwanda Mines, Petroleum and Gas Board (RMB), Rwanda Extractive Industry Workers Union (REWU), Representatives of Private Sector Federation (PSF), administration of UR College of Science and Technology, Students of Mining and Geology School, Advisors of MINEFIELD and its members.
Speaking at the event, Eric NDACYAYISENGA Watara, the Managing Director of MINEFIELD Group Ltd explained that the Group’s objective is to support activities related to the mining and quarrying sector with a focus on education and skills Development support.
He says that they seek to turn the mining industry into a knowledge-based career.
Among many services to be provided by Minefield include: Conducting Training Needs Assessment (TNA), Developing Taylor-made Training modules, conducting workforce training and Skills Development (CPD).
They will also undertake assessment to determine prior learning and offer training series to bridge skills gaps, contributing to the process of developing Skills Standards and Development evaluation Templates in the mining and quarry sector as well as providing internship and apprenticeship for new entrants into the mining and quarry sector.
In an Interview with the Media, Eng. Mutsindashyaka Andre, REWU Secretary General, said that the activities of MINEFIELD Group Ltd are responding to REWU’s demands on the establishment of a training system to workers so that they are able to practice Mining in a professional manner.
Eng. Mutsindashyaka explained that “MINEFIELD Group Ltd is responding to the demands of the REWU, which has been advocating for the training of mining workers where a big number of them have never been in Mining School.”
Professionalization of the Mining Sector doesn’t mean those who are not skilled will be expelled rather they will be trained to increase their knowledge of the profession in collaboration with the graduates of Mining and Geology school.
This was also echoed by Narcisse Dushimimana, the Head of Mining Regulation and Inspection Department at Rwanda Mines, Petroleum and Gas Board (RMB) who said that professional partners such as MINEFIELD is an additional strength since their goal is to contribute to the development the Mining Sector to ensure that it remains a pillar of national development.
He added that such groups help also in the implementation of mining laws and policies.
On the other hand, at this inaugural event, students of the Mining and Geology School at the University of Rwanda were also introduced to various discussions in order to remind them of their responsibilities once they arrive at the workplace.
During his speech, Ambassador Mutaboba Joseph, Minefield advisor, requested students to invest a lot of effort in studying so that they are capable of addressing challenges that are found at the workplace.
He said that many years ago, there were repetitive false reports that Rwanda has no minerals on its territory. From this Background, Ambassador Mutaboba in his various capacities as Ambassador has continued to explain to whoever was questioning Rwanda’s minerals that the country has enough as its neighbours have.
He asked students to learn hard so that they will be able to help the industry as it is growing faster.
Ambassador Mutaboba requested Mining students that once they graduate they should join the sector with a mission to train those who are working in mining in a traditional way. He emphasized that the skills acquired in school once utilised well will lead to the improved productivity
The same call was made by Eng. Mutsindashyaka and Charles Karake, one of the senior advisors of Minefield Group Ltd who said that graduates/students should be able to link skills acquired to the needs of the workplace.604