Presently serving as Vice-President at the Geita Gold Mine Ashanti in Geita region in northern Tanzania, Mr. Simon Shayo is an alumnus of the University of Dar es Salaam - of the graduating class of 2001. Having attended and passed all stages and classes of primary and secondary education, he was admitted into the University of Dar es Salaam in 1998. He joined what was then the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences, now College of Social Science, taking a combination of social science subjects but majoring in Sociology. He was quite an active student, assuming at one time an elective position in the student government, of a Vice-President and hence learning to take on social roles and responsibilities early before the full play in the real life after college. He completed undergraduate studies in 2001, earning a B.A honours degree. The high pass level he obtained in the bachelor’s programme, coupled by the motivation he had for advanced studies gave him ground for application and acceptability for proceeding directly to postgraduate studies. Thus, within the same year of graduation, 2001, he was admitted into a two-year master’s degree programme in sociology which he completed successfully in 2003 with an award of an MA. The UDSM courses he took in sociology both in the undergraduate programme and at the master’s level helped to equip and strengthen him with some key theories of social interaction and action in a variety of situations, preparing him for a variety of potential areas of skill application in the future, not least in social research, social policy, cultural action and community outreach and negotiation, among other many issues in public relations.
For Shayo, a first post-college taste of public engagement and the world of work was in 2002, when he was formally employed by a multi-disciplinary organisation, Inter-Consult Tanzania Ltd¾a company set up in Tanzania back in the 1970s aimed at providing professional services and advice to a wide circle of public and private clients. It was a firm of professionals supposed to deliver positive and results-oriented solutions to a wider range of socio-economic and technical issues. Simon Shayo had thus landed on safe ground, being assigned as a consulting sociologist. He worked for the firm for a period of five years, from 2002 to 2007. Then, in 2007, he joined AngloGold Ashanti, a gold mining company in Geita that had, historically. evolved from a combination of two previously separate companies¾AngloGold Limited (AngloGold) and Ashanti Goldfields Company Limited (Ashanti). He took on the position of a community relations and sustainable development superintendent¾an appointment that stood relevant to his field of training, this one apparently extending the concerns and concepts of the sociologist/anthropologist beyond just theory, into practical transactions and negotiations! He held the job for three years up until 2010 when he decided to join the Nile Basin Initiative (NBI), an intergovernmental partnership of ten countries that shared--then as now--a common objective of boosting socio-economic development through equitable utilization of the common Nile Basin water resources. The counties member to the Nile Basin are Burundi, Democratic Republic of Congo, Egypt, Ethiopia, Kenya Rwanda, South Sudan, the Sudan, Tanzania and Uganda. Simon was engaged by the organisation as a social development specialist. Although his stay with the organisation was not long (2010-2011), his background training in the social sciences, especially in sociology, must have made a useful contribution to, among others, the organisations’s need for baseline studies and data for needed information sharing and action in strengthening intergovernmental cooperation in the region.
With effect from 2011, he seemed to decidedly cross over to the ‘world of mining’ as he joined Barrick Gold Corporation (otherwise known as North Mara Gold Mine), where he worked for the next three years (2011-2014) essentially as a social development professional.
For the last nearly one decade, from March of 2014 to the present, Mr. Shayo has been working full time for AngloGoldAshanti (otherwise known as Geita Gold Mine company), in Geita, where he is serving as the company’s Vice-President (Sustainability). His position has been one with responsibility for matters of liaison between the company and its outside clients, including government, members of the public, and special groups deserving some special attention in the company’s course of operations. In his position as a senior executive, he must have remained busy on the drawing board as a think-tank towards the many and various ways and innovations not only of keeping the company socially buoyant but also of remaining relevant to its environment. Only one year into his appointment as Vice-President¾in February 2015?Simon Shayo made a ground-breaking presentation on the concept and practical translation of ‘corporate social responsibility (CSR)’. At that senior executive level, Mr. Shayo helps to steer the company’s programme of institutional self-renewal by way of internal innovations for adaptability while keeping an open-doors policy of relations with clients and stakeholders. Among several “sustainability” projects supported by Geita Gold Mining Limited (GGML) was construction (worth Shs. 100 million) of a Regional Centre for the Open University of Tanzania’s operations in Geita region (in the 2020s).
UDSM appreciates Simon Shayo’s efforts towards translating theory into practice in institutional governance and towards work resolutions. It congratulates him so highly and heartily.