The project aims to foster the empowerment of women in Angola through the employment of all-female mine clearance teams, whilst preventing landmine accidents and returning land to productive use
Luanda, 22 January 2019 – Over 45,000 m2 of land were cleared of mines by a team of trained women deminers in the area of Keneguerere, in the Benguela province, as a result of the “100 Women in Demining” project designed by Halo Trust and supported by Eni and its partners in the Block 15/06 Joint Venture, namely Sonangol P&P and SSI. The project aims to foster the empowerment of women in Angola through the employment of all-female mine clearance teams, whilst preventing landmine accidents and returning land to productive use.
Over the course of the 14-month long project, an area of 45,610m2 was cleared -
the equivalent of about 11 football pitches - and a total of 62 landmines were deactivated.
Mines were laid there in 1984 and over 170 local people were at immediate risk from
the minefields - from the local villagers and railway workers, to Mucubal herders
who walk their cattle down to the river. The cleared land is now freely accessible
to the community and a school has also been built.
The project included the selection and training of women from the rural districts
of Balombo and Bocoio and the cities of Lobito and Benguela. The women have the opportunity
to learn new skills: from clearing landmines, vehicle maintenance and mechanics, to
paramedic first aid. The women all come from low income communities, and their regular
employment has a wider impact on the women’s families and dependents.
“We believe that private companies have a social responsibility to impact
positively on the countries where they operate.” commented Mr Andrea Giaccardo,
Managing Director of Eni Angola. “We chose to support the Halo Trust’s
100 Women in Demining project because it addresses a whole set of urgent issues: landmine
clearance and access to land, as well as women empowerment and employment, and skill
acquisition. With their work, these brave and skilled Angolan women are contributing
to the sustainable development of their country”.
Eni is an energy company, working to build a future where everyone can access energy
resources efficiently and sustainably. Eni operates in 71 countries worldwide, employing
around 33,000 people. The company is engaged in oil and gas exploration, production,
refining and marketing operations, power generation also from renewable sources, and
petrochemicals. Eni has been present in Angola since 1980, where it operates Block
15/06 through a Joint Venture formed by Eni (36.84%, Operator), Sonangol P&P (36.84%)
and SSI Fifteen Limited (26.32%).