MAC: Mines and Communities

African Commission creates a Working Group on Extractive Industries in Africa

Published by MAC on 2009-12-22

Vital breakthrough achieved after five years effort

Thanks to five years effort by various African civil society organisations, the African Commission on Human and Peoples' Rights (ACHPR)* has established a working group to examine, and act upon, the manifold abuses inflicted by extractive companies and overnments which back them.

* Established by the African Charter on Human and Peoples' Rights (which came into force on 21 October 1986) the ACHPR is charged with ensuring promotion and protection of Human and Peoples' Rights throughout the African Continent.

African Commission establishment of a Working Group on Extractive Industries, Environment and Human Rights Abuse in Africa

TWN Africa

10 December 2009

We are happy to announce that we finally got the African Commission on Human and People's Rights to adopt a resolution to establish a Working Group on Extractive Industries, Environment and Human Rights Abuse in Africa. This resolution was adopted at the 46th session of the Commission held in Banjul, The Gambia from 11th to 25th November 2009.

As you may know, this victory has come following sustained pressure and lobbying of the African Commission since 2004, to recognize the preponderance of extractive sector related human rights abuses and marginalization faced by communities in across Africa.

We at Third World Network-Africa see this victory as a collective endeavour and we need to share the joy collectively knowing that there is more work ahead in ensuring that the resolution translates into concrete actions for the protection of community rights everywhere in Africa particularly those affected by mining.

The working group will be chaired by Commissioner Mumba Malil (Zambia) and Commissioner Soyata Maiga (Mali). Colleagues in the respective countries may need to begin mapping national strategies to enable the various Chairs to appreciate the endemic human rights violations associated with mining and other extractives.

This is indeed a victory for us.

Lindlyn Tamufor
Programme Officer - Environment Unit
Third World Network Africa
9 Ollenu St. East Legon
P O Box AN 19452
Accra - Ghana
Tel: (233-21) 511189 / 503669 / 500419
Fax: (233-21) 511188

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