Global mining giant Anglo American is investing R15-million (about US$1.5 million) in the Wits School of Public Health to establish a new Chair, to be known as the Anglo American Endowed Chair in Occupational Hygiene, the company said last week.
The Wits School of Public Health, which is a section of Wits University, is located in the suburb of Braamfontein, in Johannesburg.
The company said that the Chair will conduct research, and engage in other scholarly activities, with the aim of decreasing employee exposure to dust, noise and other health hazards in mining and other industries, thereby contributing to employee wellbeing.
The Wits School of Public Health has long been the forerunner in the country in research and postgraduate studies in occupational health, the tertiary institution said.
“We are very proud to have been granted the funds by Anglo American for this Chair and we are thankful that they are collaborating with us to strengthen our response to occupational hygiene, both in South Africa and Africa,” Professor Adam Habib, Wits Vice-Chancellor and Principal, said.
“The university’s responsiveness in this important field will advance our vision as a globally competitive and locally relevant university located in the economic and social hub of Africa,” said.
Khanyisile Kweyama, executive director of Anglo American in South Africa, said: “This investment reinforces Anglo American’s commitment to health and safety and to the wellbeing our people and communities, through partnerships with government, academia and other stakeholders.”
“Our occupational health strategy and management approach are governed by a series of standards, guidelines and assurance processes aimed at preventing harm to our workforce,” she explained.
The partnership will further see a strengthening of the existing link between Anglo American and the university’s mining engineering degree, Kweyama added.
Photo: Khanyisile Kweyama, executive director of Anglo American in South Africa. Credit: Mining Technology.com