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It is important for people working in close proximity to others to be vaccinated, First Quantum Minerals has said in clarifying Covid-19 vaccination protocols at its Kansanshi mine, in Solwezi, and its Sentinel mine, in Kalumbila.

The protocols are aimed at encouraging all employees and contractors to be vaccinated, while also respecting everyone’s right to decide whether they get vaccinated or not.

Kansanshi Mining General Manager Anthony Mukutuma said the company would require those working in close proximity to others to be vaccinated.

Mr Mukutuma said only those who would be vaccinated would be permitted access to the company’s recreational facilities, in a move similar to the Covid-19 passes mandated by governments in many parts of the world.
“Our aim is to increase vaccine coverage of our workforce to mitigate the severity of illness during this fourth wave, so as not to overwhelm the medical facilities in the area.

“Unvaccinated employees and contractors will still be able to access the mine facilities and to work, the only requirement will be to present a negative polymerase chain reaction result every time they are away from site for more than 72 hours,” he said.

Mr Mukutuma said the approach was in line with government’s efforts to stem the tide of Covid-19 and its most recent Omicron variant, with strong calls for citizens to get vaccinated.
He however said more than half of the employees had been fully vaccinated across all the company’s sites, with 5 517 of the 10 149 total headcount vaccinated.

He said Kansanshi Mining leads the field, with 65% of employees fully vaccinated, while about 36% of Kalumbila Minerals’ workers have opted to receive the jab.
And Kalumbila Minerals General Manager Sean Egner said the Covid-19 battle was personal for everyone, hence, the duty to get vaccinated and be part of the surviving humanity.

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