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Join us and become a corruption fighter

The Corruption Watch team is small, but dedicated. Our people are excited about the work they do, and proud that they’re helping to take South Africa forward. Our task is often challenging, but always rewarding. If you’re looking for an inspirational environment and work that truly makes a difference, contact us.

We currently have the following vacancies

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Call for Consultancy: Research into financial agreements entered into by mine-affected communities

Background

Corruption Watch (CW) is a non-profit organisation launched in January 2012. The organisation uses reports of corruption from the public as an important source of information to fight corruption and hold leaders accountable for their actions. CW exposes corruption through communications platforms and mobilises the public to take a stand against corruption and the abuse of public funds. An important area of CW’s work is in the extractives sector with a focus on examining the history of the South African royalty system and investigating how royalties are paid and administered and managed.

CW conducted research into contractual royalty payments that were paid directly to communities before the Minerals Petroleum and Resources Development Act (MPRDA) came into effect and the subsequent industry shift towards varying mechanisms for payments with the most common of these being the “royalty for equity conversions”. The research methodology adopted identified policy and legislative gaps that exist and approaches to meaningfully address these gaps. CW undertook investigations regarding the extent of revenues paid directly into community funds or similar vehicles since 1980 in three communities involving platinum mining operations or communities along the platinum belt. CW now intends to narrow this work into a research project that interrogates the forms and types of financial agreements entered into by communities, and examines the level of participation rights that exist and are exercised through such agreements.

This research will enable CW to accurately design a guidance tool focused on public participation and unpacking the layers of participation rights afforded to the most affected members of the communities within the context of royalties. The tool will provide a minimum standards framework in which community members are informed of their participation rights when engaging with aspects of community trusts and any other financial vehicle established under the auspice of community development.

Please note this research will not look into monies paid to government by operating mining companies as per the Mineral and Petroleum Resources Royalty Act 28 of 2008‎.

Specific terms of reference

The specific terms of reference of the consultancy are research, interrogate, review and analyse:

  • the financial vehicles established for mine-affected communities by industry and the subsequent level of financial mobility of thereof;
  • the participation rights and the forms of financial vehicles, community trusts and social and labour plans established in mine-affected communities for benefit and development;
  • the current legal and policy framework that is utilised to inform interested groups and individuals on proposed developments and compensation structures, so as to assess the application of principles that make people aware of the financial benefit that may affect their lives directly or indirectly;
  • the various forms of economic mobility within mine-affected communities;
  • the vulnerabilities currently associated with administration and management of community royalties;
  • comparative analysis on compensation structures designed for mine-affected communities established in mineral rich jurisdiction; and
  • form recommendations of policy and legal framework on application of best practice on financial transparency in this space.

Key deliverables

  • Produce a comprehensive research report that will explore the current level of participation rights of communities in compensation agreements of extractive projects and all issues identified; propose policy and legal recommendations that guide good governance and management of community royalties of mine-affected communities; and ensure the respect of fundamental human rights and freedoms in the form of a position paper and a high level presentation to policy makers.

Availability and timeline

The consultant will start work by the end of August and will have completed the consultancy by January 2021. No travel is expected as part of this consultancy. The consultant will complete this assignment from their primary place of work.

Selection criteria:

The consultant must have:

  • a graduate degree in law, political science, economics and/ or any other relevant similar disciplines;
  • at least five years’ experience in national work in the following fields; mineral resource governance, civil society, fiscal transparency, free prior and informed consent (FPIC) principles, body of work in mine-affected communities and knowledge of governance of community development trusts and any other related field;
  • demonstrated desk-based research and writing skills;
  • familiarity with transparency, good governance, and accountability in the extractives sector;
  • attention to detail; ability to meet deadlines;
  • responsiveness to inquiries and excellent communication skills;
  • independence from government and extractive companies.

CLOSING DATE: 17 August 2020:

If you are interested in applying please send e-mail, clearly stating your qualifications, interest in the research, methodology to be used, and cost of the consultancy, to: admin@corruptionwatch.org.za with the subject line “Mining Royalties Consultancy”

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Legal interns and externs – please note that the positions below are being offered on a rolling basis, meaning that while there is no closing date, we will select from the applications as and when required.

LEGAL INTERNS

As part of CW’s mandate, we are committed to strengthening the criminal justice system, including efforts to address financial crime; the refinement of our planning and procurement systems; and supporting and strengthening the ability of private and public bodies to better detect and address corruption in their spheres of operation.

CW is looking for interns to work in our offices in Johannesburg, South Africa. Applications are accepted on a rolling basis but applicants are encouraged to get their application in as soon as possible, indicating dates of availability. Interns will work at CW ’s offices under the supervision of one of our legal and investigations unit members.

Responsibilities may include legal research and writing, including international and comparative law research; factual research on specific legal cases and fact-checking legal filings; assisting in ongoing investigations into reports of corruption; and assisting staff in organising conferences and seminars.

Please note that the position is unpaid.

Requirements:

  • Interest in human rights issues;
  • Excellent oral and written communication skills in English;
  • Excellent research skills including online sources;
  • Well-organised, self-motivated and reliable.

Interested applicants should send a letter of interest, a detailed CV and an unedited writing sample to admin@corruptionwatch.org.za, with the subject line “Legal Internship”.

LEGAL EXTERNS

CW is looking for externs – full time students who can dedicate approximately 10 hours per week to research and general assistance to CW. Externs will generally work from home, with occasional meetings with the CW legal and investigations unit. This work may include legal research and writing, including international and comparative law research; and factual research on specific legal cases.

Externships are designed to give students practical experience of working in litigation, without the time and financial difficulties full-time internships create. Working with CW ’s legal and investigations unit provides students with exposure to litigation at domestic courts as well as to regional and international human rights mechanisms, and will help broaden your understanding of the strategies lawyers involved in such cases adopt. However, our externships require dedication and hard work, and we expect high standards of work from our externs.

Preferred applicants:

  • All law students who already have an undergraduate degree;
  • Interest in corruption, political and human rights issues;
  • Excellent oral and written communication skills in English;
  • Excellent research skills including online sources;
  • Well-organised, self-motivated and reliable.

Interested applicants should send a one-page letter of interest, a detailed CV, an unedited writing sample and a two-page answer to the research question to admin@corruptionwatch.org.za, with the subject line “Legal Externship”.

Research question: In your opinion how does corruption impact on human rights and how can the law be used to mitigate and/or combat these impacts?

Please check this page regularly to keep up to date with Corruption Watch positions as they become available.

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