Barrick Niugini's Porgera operation has an accredited National Apprenticeship and Trade Testing Board (NATTB) maintenance training facility, which allows trade testing and assessments. The mine is a national training provider under the PNG National Training Council.
Barrick Niugini says that over its years of operation, Porgera has recruited and trained locals with qualifications from as low as Grade 10, through the mine's Job Ready Program. These people were then placed in various roles in different divisions of the mine for further skill development.
In March and April this year, NATTB had conducted trade testing and student assessments in heavy equipment fitting, electrical, maintenance fitting and machining, auto electrical and motor vehicle mechanics.
In July and August 2020, as the Mine went on care and maintenance phase, Barrick Niugini's employee development traineeships superintendent Tommy Aselai ensured that NATTB and mine-based certification continued.
On 10 August, while presenting certificates to some recipients, Aselai said he was satisfied that they had achieved their certificates, and encouraged them to use their new qualifications to explore further employment opportunities.
"We have a limited number of skilled people in the country. You are going to add to the number of skilled people in the country with on-the-job experience, and I am sure these qualifications will help you do well in your future employment," Aselai said when presenting the certificates in August.
Heavy fitting equipment tradesman David Tapus, a local from Porgera, said he appreciated the Porgera joint venture's efforts to assist him attain the certificate. His mates Nenga Mange and Mathew Aiyu also thanked trainers and the program management team for helping them reach these achievements.
The men were all part of the 2650 PNG nationals who were made redundant at the end of July because of the government's refusal to renew the mine's special mining lease.