By Rumbidzai M. Masango
The forth session of the People’s Indaba (Alternative Mining Indaba) was held 3 - 5 February 2013 in Cape Town, South Africa parallel to the government and corporate lead 19th Mining Indaba. Delegates from over 15 countries were represented at the AMI, amongst whom were mining community members from the region, Bishops, diplomats, civil society organizations as well as faith based organizations, just to name a few.
The three day meeting deliberated the ongoing continental mining reform agenda represented by the Africa Mining Vision and its potential. Participants debated and analysed government policies and programmes for redressing environmental impacts of mining activities as well as compensation issues for communities affected by mining activities.
The meeting also provided a space for the delegates to broaden their understanding of economic and financial policies that facilitate tax avoidance and evasion in the mining sector such as transfer pricing, opaque investment contracts and bilateral investment treaties. A crucial part of the programme was to allow communities to share their experiences. Given the wake of the Marikana Massacre the AMI held a panel discussion where communities could give first had accounts of the Massacre as well as express the challenges faced after the shootings.
A bright and vibrant march yesterday saw close to 120 participants picket at the entrance of the Cape Town International Convention Center (CTICC) for over two and a half hours until the declaration was eventually received by the Janine Hills, a media adviser for the Mining Indaba. For the full declaration read by Bishop Seoka, click here.
Below see some of the media’s response to the 4th AMI:
Indaba to highlight darker side of mining
Mining Indaba protesters complain of lack of labour representation
Protesters march to Mining Indaba (Pictorial of March Procession)
Tax avoidance blamed for Africa’s loss of resource income