Corruption Watch, in its submissions on the draft amendments to the Mineral and Petroleum Resources Development Act (MPRDA) regulations, which were published at the end of 2019 with calls for public comment, highlights three key issues in relation to the mining sector:
- To ensure that the regulations limit harm to vulnerable mining communities;
- Equally important, to ensure that benefits reach the communications; and
- To ensure transparency in the mining application process, payments of taxes, royalties, social and labour plans (SLPs), and environmental rehabilitation, so that these align with international best practise guidelines on environmental sustainability.
The points raised in this submission are in line with our body of work in the mining sector.
However, the organisation raises particular concerns around the limitations that regulations might place on the ability of communities to voice their concerns and participate meaningfully in decision making processes which affect them, particularly mining activities which may affect their security of tenure, their social and natural environment, and other socio-economic conditions.
Corruption Watch also questions whether the amendments adequately regulate SLPs and environmental impact management, and create a legislative gap regarding the role of regional managers as well as the minister for the prevention and protection against potential human rights violations.
One of Corruption Watch’s key objectives in its work in the mining sector is to encourage amendments that provide the most affected members with a meaningful role in decision making, from the initial stage of the application process until the rehabilitation stage. The organisation will be hosting sessions at the Alternative Mining Indaba in Cape Town between 3 and 5 February 2020. For more info, click here.
Corruption Watch legal researcher Mashudu Masutha says: “While there are aspects of the MPRDA regulations that we welcome – specifically the expansion of the definition of interested and affected parties – a large part of these regulations still requires much fleshing out. Our submissions are focused on providing a transparent, accountable and bottom-up approach to concretising the framework needed to ensure that the South African mining sector is aimed at shared prosperity, and echoes the ethos of leaving no one behind.”
Phemelo Khaas 083 763 3472 email@example.com