ST BARBARA SPENT $42 MILLION ON SALARIES ALONE

Equipment is readied for the reopening of the Gold Ridge mine in the Solomon Islands March 4, 2011.  REUTERS/James Regan.

Equipment is readied for the reopening of the Gold Ridge mine in the Solomon Islands March 4, 2011. REUTERS/James Regan.

Saint Barbara Mining Company has spent 42-million dollars on salaries alone without any return in the last 10 weeks.

In a statement yesterday, the Forum Solomon Islands International said General Manager of Gold Ridge, Stean Barrie made the statement when he met with employees at the Don Bosco Technical Institute, Wednesday this week.

Mr Barrie said the St. Barbara Board of Directors decided to keep all GRML employees on full pay for the past ten weeks, which costs the company 42-million dollars.

He told Gold Ridge employees, this was a company commitment which they will continue to honor.

SIBC News understands, the company returned after successful discussions with the Government through a Technical Working Group.

Meanwhile, the Gold Ridge General Manager told employees the decision to shut down the mine was measured against factors that included the rise of water level at the tailing to over 3-hundred millimeters in just 4 days.

The GRML boss said the cut-off of the Tinahula River Bridge meant no more fuel to the plant site, no food for the staff on site and no employees going in and out of the site.

Stean Barrie said the safety of employees and their family members was the priority at that time and this caused the Management to make a decision using available information.

He also updated employees about key risks the company faces as it works on its stabilization plan.

He said the eminent risks include stabilization of the plant site, proper management of the tailing, disposing of explosives and the unfixed Tinahula bridge.

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