Mining Indaba: SA ‘lagging behind other mineral-rich countries in transparency’
Corruption Watch, which is holding an “Alternative Mining Indaba” in Woodstock while the official mining indaba runs at the Cape Town International Convention Centre, has urged South Africa to join the international transparency standard for managing oil, gas and mineral resources, the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative.
A legal researcher with Corruption Watch, Mashudu Masutha, said: “South Africa is not on the same page as other resource-rich countries regarding disclosures and transparency in the mining industry.”
Masutha added: “The key question is whether the current legislative framework that encompasses living customary law is in conflict with the principles of democracy, and whether traditional leadership structures are committed to upholding the participation rights of all, and to shared prosperity.”
South Africa needed to pursue policy and legislative reforms that promoted revenue transparency in extractives to address the problem of illicit financial flows, said Masutha.
Meanwhile, in its submissions on the draft amendments to the Mineral and Petroleum Resources Development Act regulations, which were published at the end of 2019 with calls for public comment, Corruption Watch, highlighted three key issues in relation to the mining sector.
These were: to ensure that the regulations limited harm to vulnerable mining communities; to ensure that benefits reached the communities; and to ensure transparency in the mining application process, payments of taxes, royalties, social and labour plans, and environmental rehabilitation, so that these aligned with international best practice guidelines on environmental sustainability.@MwangiGithahu