Less than 48 hours after protesters disrupted its mining operations, ArcelorMittal has resumed production, processing and transporting of iron ore from the Tokadi mines in Nimba County.
Full production activities resumed about 18:00hrs on Saturday when the Direct Shipping Ore Crushing Plant, which was damaged during a rampage on the mining facilities, was repaired by a combination of Liberian and expatriate engineers of the company.
So far, 11,445 metric tons of iron ore, a slight increase over the June average, were confirmed by the ArcelorMittal Management to have been processed for transport to the Port City of Buchanan by rail.
ArcelorMittal Operations Manager, Prayaga Prasad, who led Information Minister Lewis Brown and a team of journalists on a tour of the main mining facility on Saturday, disclosed that the company was pleased to continue its activities after order was restored to the mining town by the Liberia National Police.
He pledged his company’s continued support to the development of Liberia, and praised the Liberian Government for its quick response to restore order and security to the mining facility.
In remarks, Information Minister Brown thanked the Management of ArcelorMittal for retaining faith in the government to continue to provide a secure environment for doing business in Liberia.
He informed the management that like all governments, although the Liberian Government may not be able to stop the commission of all crimes, criminals would not be permitted to operate without the required legal consequences.
“The immediate restoration of order and resumption of production activities in Yekepa signal that although our resolve will be tested by individuals who wish to reverse the progress and taint the image of our country, there are more Liberians and partners of progress who are willing to continue on this important journey to our country’s recovery for shared prosperity, in an environment of peace and security,” Brown said.
The Minister informed the management, staff and employees of ArcelorMittal that a number of arrests have already been made, and that investigation leading to the prosecution of individuals responsible for the damage and looting of the mining facilities are ongoing.
He assured the management of ArcelorMittal of government’s continued protection as well as the support and goodwill of all law-abiding citizens.