Ballah Town, Grand Cape Mount County-Sime Darby Plantation Liberia has turned over seventeen newly constructed latrines to several communities in Grand Cape Mount County.
The seventeen latrines each with four rooms were Wednesday, May 22, 2019 turned over to the communities through the Chairman of the Projected Affected Communities (PAC) Mr. Abraham Kromah by Sime Darby.
Performing the official turnover, Mr. Zolu Seh, head of Industrial Relations at Sime Darby said after months of construction work by Mutajaah Equipment Vehicle Rental & Services Company , a local contractor recommended by the PAC to perform the work, all seventeen latrines have been fully completed and are now ready to be used by the communities.
The PAC comprises seventeen towns and villages and each town will benefit from one latrine each containing four rooms.
Receiving the keys to the latrines, PAC Chairman Kromah thanked Sime Darby for the project, indicating that it will relieve the constraints facing residents by going to use nearby bushes, something he says is very risky during the night hours.
“We say thank you to Sime Darby. They are always doing good things that is why when we go for Multi-stakeholders platform meetings we always present to the rest of the people in Liberia that Sime Darby is doing well for us”, said Mr. Kromah.
Kromah added that the PAC will continue to engage and work with Sime Darby constructively for the benefit of the communities and to also protect the investment.
“We are not troublemakers, we only want for the Sime Darby to do the right things for our people and as much as they are doing the right things, there will always be peaceful co-existence”, the PAC Chairman added.
The cost of the construction of the seventeen latrines is placed at Fifty-two thousand United States dollars (US$52,000).
Even though such latrine construction is not part of the Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) signed between Sime Darby and the PAC but the company as part of its Corporate Social Responsibilities (CSR) decided to construct the latrines in order to provide the communities with decent restrooms facilities.
Sime Darby has constructed and is maintaining latrines in its estate camps for all occupants either employee or non-employee.
Sime Darby also operates a clinic that provides medication to employees and people from within the concession communities.
The farthest camps from clinic is only 5 km radius and SDPL currently provides two ambulances for emergency with one more ambulance to be provided in 2019.
The company operates several welfare programs including seven schools with total of 4,833 students and 118 teachers costing USD 680,000 annually providing education for children of the company employees as well as those from nearby communities.
Sime Darby has also been providing Scholarships to Liberians with USD 488,204 spent for 51 local and 5 international scholarships. It is also providing housing in 22 camps equipped with 212 latrines and 51 hand pumps.
At the clinic, the company spends USD 760,000 annually on employees and communities on average 1,500 to 2,000 patients per month both employees and communities.