With the next stage of the West African eXploration Initiative (WAXI) starting soon, Amira Global spoke to module leader for the basin research group, Prince ofori Amponsah from the University of Ghana.
Q: What is your role in this stage of WAXI, and have you been involved in the project in the past?
I am currently the module leader for the basin research group. An arm of WAXI 4 which will look at the Neoproterozoic to Cenozoic age basins in West Africa. I have been involved in WAXI 2 as a Master Student and WAXI 3 as a PhD student.
Q: Who will you be working with?
Yes, I will be working with a team all over Africa, Australia, France and the Netherlands. They are Prof. Mark Jessell, Prof. Kim Hien, Prof Steau Beau, Prof. Atta-Peters, Prof. Osumane Wane, Prof. Alaine Koumalane, Dr. Frank Van Ruitenbeek, Prof. Marion Bamford, Dr Zubair Jinnah, Abigail Ayiwei and Stefano Salvi.
Q: What is your speciality, and how is this being applied in the WAXI project?
My speciality is in Structural Geology and Metallogeny. It has helped the WAXI project in two ways. My PhD studies in the Wa-Lawra belt has helped Azumah Resources Limited as to where the company must focus its search for the commodity of interest and has helped the company increase its Global gold inventory from 2.0 to 2.8 Moz of Gold.
Although I will be leading the whole basin research administratively and scientifically, I will be more focussed on the basin-basement relationships and architecture and well as the metallogenic aspect of the work.
Q: What do you believe are the benefits of the WAXI project for industry, and West Africa? What prompted you to become involved?
The WAXI project to me has helped industry to better understand the systems (tectonics and mineral systems) and the Craton in which they are exploring for various commodities. Industry has benefitted immensely from its capacity building exercises. Thus, via industry-related courses which have trained workers in various fields such as structural mapping, exploration geochemistry and structural Geophysics. WAXI has also provided industry as well as its partners’ 3D models of the craton on various scales.
Q: What do you hope the project will achieve?
At the end of the day we better understand every inch of ground on the West African Craton, be it mineral and petroleum systems, tectonics, metamorphic processes and well as sedimentary processes. This will go a long way for nations in West Africa to understand the true potential of what they have and how the resources will be harnessed in a better and sustainable way.