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MIIF introduced GH¢20 million scholarship program to enhance women’s involvement in mining

Women's Tabloid News Desk
Women's Tabloid News Desk

The Minerals Income and Investment Fund (MIIF) has introduced a scholarship program worth GH¢20 million designed to empower women residing in mining communities.

In collaboration with the University of Mines and Technology (UMaT), the initiative aims to boost female participation in an industry historically dominated by males. During the launch event, MIIF CEO Edward Nana Yaw Koranteng underscored the vital role of investing in human capital alongside financial resources within the mining sector.

MIIF CEO Edward Nana Yaw Koranteng stated “We believe that just investing in equity, investing in the value chain etc. without investing in human capacity or human development will really just take us nowhere; you know, we hit a wall at a point in time.”

The scholarship program aims to support up to 100 women annually from economically disadvantaged families in mining communities. It focuses on bright students pursuing STEM courses, especially in engineering and metallurgy. This initiative forms part of MIIF’s broader strategy to align human resource development with government policies and the fund’s objectives.

Mr. Korateng highlighted the stark gender imbalance in the mining industry, noting: “There’s a huge gender disparity. If you look at mining, for example, you have just 9 percent of women in mining, especially when it comes to mainstream mining. You look at the C-suite of mining, it’s less than 9 percent”.

Studies show that higher involvement of women in the sector contributes to increased value creation. Mr. Koranteng highlighted this point, stating: “If you do research, it will tell you that the more you invest in women, the more you have women in the sector, the more value is created for the sector”.

Mr. Koranteng compared this initiative to other government educational programs like the Free Senior High School (SHS) initiative, stressing the critical importance of such investments. “It’s almost like the free SHS, you know; you have the argument that we should wait 10, 20 years before we implement free SHS, but the negative social impact does not wait for you,” he explained.

The CEO emphasized the crucial role of human capital in national development, especially concerning the management of natural resources. “As we see in the mining sector, the resources are good – but the resources do not develop a nation. It is brains that develop a nation,” Koranteng stated.

The scholarship program is one element of MIIF’s comprehensive educational and research initiative. Mr. Koranteng announced plans to expand the program’s reach, stating: “We’re looking at whether we can support other universities like the University of Ghana and University of Science and Technology.”

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