Monitor mining contract performance-CSOs urged.


The Zimbabwe Environmental Law Association and Kimberley Process Civil Society Coalition Coordinator, Mr Shamiso Mtisi has highlighted that it is the responsibility of investors in addition to their basic obligations to act in accordance with all laws of Zimbabwe to make sure that the products produced, work conducted, and services provided by them comply with national and international standards. This also entails respecting the national heritage, customs and traditions of Zimbabwe.

Mr Mtisi made these sentiments while unpacking the Zimbabwe Investment and Development Agency Act at an Expert training on mining contract performance monitoring organised by ZELA in collaboration with the International Senior Lawyers Project (ISLP) from the 27th -28th May 2021.

The citizens and civil society organisations (CSOs) and other key stakeholders who attended the training sought clarity on mining contract performance monitoring and how they can play a key role in monitoring contracts to promote transparency and accountability.

Mr Oliver Chikumba from Rimbi Village in Chipinge also noted that consultation, participation, and the principle of free, prior, and informed consent remains critical and should be considered by investors. He referred to Alrosa Zimbabwe which intends to explore for diamonds in Chipinge and how it is important for the company to fully consult the locals and put their proposals into consideration.

Women and Law in Southern Africa-Zimbabwe Director, Mrs Fadzai Traquino highlighted that the first step in civil society monitoring is to identify the company’s obligations and to determine which of those obligations to monitor. In a contractual regime, this requires access to the contracts. Citizens will need to see the mining contracts to be able to understand the full range of commitments the company has made in terms of taxes, royalties, social infrastructure, the environment, among others.

However, mining contracts remain private in many countries and only when civil society players have access to the contracts can they analyse the full range of companies’ obligations. Once they understand those obligations, they can determine whether the companies are complying.

The participants were also encouraged to develop evidence-based advocacy campaigns and systematically report non compliance using the media, parliament, and the judiciary when and where appropriate.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published.