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Namibia: Local fishermen protest against proposed marine phosphate mining; say it will compromise their livelihood

Author: Adam Hartman, the namibian, Published on: 30 September 2019

"Fisheries workers against marine phosphate mining", 10 September 2019.

Over 1000 people, mostly workers in the fishing industry at Walvis Bay, participated in a mass protest against marine phosphate mining, urging the government not to grant prospective miners an environmental clearance certificate... Job Muniaro [acting president of National Union of Namibian Workers] said...that marine phosphate mining was being promoted by a few “whose love for money outweighs the well-being of the majority of Namibians and the Namibian economy.” He accused the prospective mining companies for blackmailing Namibians and its leaders to get an environmental clearance certificate...

Last month, environment and tourism minister Pohamba Shifeta told The Namibian that marine phosphate mining proponents tried to pressure him into approving the controversial phosphate seabed mining. Shifeta, the environmental commissioner and the deputy environmental commissioner were sued in the Windhoek High Court by Namibia Marine Phosphates (NMP)...NMP wants the court to compel the MET officials to make a decision on its continued efforts to be granted the certificate it needs to commence marine phosphate mining...

In another matter due in the High Court today, three organisations representing the Namibian fishing industry – the Confederation of Namibian Fishing Associations, the Namibian Hake Association and the Midwater Trawling Association of Namibia – are asking the court to declare that a mining licence issued to NMP in July 2011 is invalid, because the company failed to undertake an environmental impact assessment and apply for an environmental clearance certificate within the time limits stipulated in the law...

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