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 The National Coalition on Mining (NCOM) is organising a dialogue meeting with International Institutions and Missions in Ghana on Wednesday December 6th, 2006 in Miklin Hotel, East Legon, Accra.In recent years, there has been an increase in alleged cases of violence and human rights abuses perpetrated against people living in communities affected by mining projects by the police, the military and private security of mining companies. Such alleged violence and abuses apart from dehumanising people also contributes to creating instability that is counter-productive for the already impoverished rural economies and the national economy as a whole.

The Coalition recognises the role of International Development Agencies and Missions in the promotion and development of the mining sector in particular and the critical link between their work and Ghana’s development effort. It is this recognition which inspires the Coalition to convene this dialogue meeting.      

The purpose of the meeting is to:

•    Draw your attention to alleged cases of violence and human rights abuses perpetrated against people living in communities affected by mining.

•    Discuss actions and mechanisms for stopping and preventing such violence and human rights abuses.

The meeting will bring together about 16 International Development Agencies and Missions including the European Commission, CIDA, DANIDA, World Bank, IMF, IFC, UNDP, USAID, DFID, GTZ, etc as well as some victims of the alleged violence and brutalities, members of the Coalition. It is expected that the dialogue meeting would provide information which is sufficiently valuable to enable these Agencies and Missions act in support of the Coalition to stop and prevent further violence in mining communities.  

Early this year the Coalition launched a national campaign to draw public attention and to secure support to stop and prevent further violence in mining. Since the launch of the campaign the Coalition has made efforts to reach out to various institutions and ministries who hold sway to the agencies that perpetuate the violence. These institutions and ministries include the Commission on Human Rights and Administrative Justice (CHRAJ), Parliament, and the Ministries of Defence and the Interior respectively. Both the Ministers of Defence and Interior have pledged to work with the Coalition to stop and prevent further violence. The Minster of Defence pledged to carry out investigation into the alleged cases of violence involving the Military. The Minister of the Interior also pledged to cause a letter to be written by the IGP and circulate all district commanders drawing their attention to the persistent violence and calling for action to prevent it. He has also pledged to communicate the concerns of the Coalition in respect to the violence to Cabinet. We have information that CHRAJ has commenced investigation into the reported cases of violence. CHRAJ has also invited the Coalition and representatives of some communities affected by the alleged violent acts to participate in national multistakeholder workshop on civil, political and economic rights. This is yet another dimension of addressing the issue of violence in mining.

The National Coalition on Mining (NCOM) is a grouping of NGOs, communities and individuals engaged in mining/extractive sector advocacy for environmental sustainability, human and community rights, and national economic development.

dialogue meeting with International Institutions and Missions in Ghana

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Declaration of civil society organisations at the meeting of the Africa Trade Network, Cape Town, South Africa

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