Oxfam wants locals’ rights protected by mining companies
The Vice President of Programme at OXFAM America, Darius Teter has said his organization would ensure that local communities’ rights are protected by mining companies operating in the West African sub-region.
Teter has been on a familiarization tour of his organization’s projects in Senegal, said local communities have a right to know what type of investments in mining are coming into their areas.
In an interview with WADR, the Oxfam official said local people also have the full right in decision making on land allocated to mining companies.
The issue of land grabbing has hit the headlines in various countries across Africa in recent times, with local people complaining of being dispossessed of their land. In some cases, the locals say they are being deprived of their land without appropriate compensation or suitable relocation in favour of multinational companies.
Since his arrival on Monday, Teter has been meeting with civil society groups, leaders of women groups who are working to increase the value of local products.
He also visited some suburbs of Dakar to assess for himself the impacts flood waters have had on the lives of the local population, especially the large Dakar suburb of Pikine.
The Oxfam executive said that revenues generated from mining and other resources and investment projects should be managed in a transparent manner and that mining companies should be accountable, in terms of environmental and social impacts.
He assured his organization was committed to continuing its support to grassroots groups, especially women’s groups on micro-credit facilities to help improve people’s living conditions.
Click audio below to listen to the full interview the Oxfam America Vice President of Programme had with WADR’s Alpha Jallow