Haiti: Communities file complaint before World Bank over social & environmental concerns of proposed mining legislation


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Article
9 January 2015

Haiti: Gold Mining Activities and Sector Reforms

Author: Accountability Counsel

...The World Bank is providing technical assistance to the Haitian government for mining sector reforms…primarily through the updating of the legal and regulatory framework that governs mining activities.  To date, the legislative process has not included meaningful consultation with affected communities and the draft law that has been developed lacks adequate social and environmental protections...The Kolektif Jistis Min (Mining Justice Collective) in collaboration with several mining-affected Haitian communities filed a complaint…to the World Bank Inspection Panel, with assistance from Accountability Counsel and the Global Justice Clinic. The complaint calls for an in-depth, transparent analysis of the Haitian government’s capacity to regulate mining activities and to protect the human rights of Haitian communities…[T]he International Finance Corporation (“IFC”), the World Bank’s private investment arm, has [also] invested $10.3 million in Canada-based Eurasian Minerals for prospection and exploration activities in Haiti…Affected communities...are concerned about...potential social and environmental risks...

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Author: Kolektif Jistis Min et autres

[Texte complet de la plainte]

[Les organisations de la société civile et les communautés affectées] craign[ent] que le Projet de Loi Minière élaboré avec le soutien de la Banque Mondiale ait été rédigée…sans consultation adéquate avec les organisations de la société civile et les communautés directement touchées par l'activité minière…ne parvienne pas à protéger les droits humains et les droits environnementaux du peuple haïtien…Les Plaignants craignent que, en raison de la faible capacité du gouvernement et des insuffisances de la loi, cet investissement accru dans le secteur minier se traduise par des torts sociaux et environnementaux graves, y compris la contamination de cours d'eau essentiels, les impacts sur le secteur agricole, et le déplacement involontaire des communautés…Les Plaignants demandent que la Banque Mondiale et le gouvernement haïtien mènent une analyse pointue et transparente de la capacité du gouvernement haïtien à réglementer et à surveiller les activités des entreprises minières, et à faire face à ses obligations de protection des droits humains du peuple haïtien dans le contexte des activités minières…

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7 January 2015

[Full text of the complaint]

Author: Kolektif Jistis Min & others

Haitian civil society organizations…and communities…directly affected by the development and reform of the Haitian mining sector…are concerned that the proposed mining legislation…developed with World Bank support: has been drafted…without adequate consultation with civil society organizations and communities…The World Bank’s involvement in developing the Draft Mining Law lends the law credibility, which is likely to encourage investment in the Haitian mining sector. Complainants fear that, due to the government’s weak capacity and the law’s inadequacies, this increased investment in the mining sector will result in serious social and environmental harms, including contamination of vital waterways, impacts on the agriculture sector, and involuntary displacement of communities…

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