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en/sierra-leone-ngos-denounce-imprisonment-of-community-members-opposing-socfin-plantations-includes-company-response#c133651

Socfin response

Author: Socfin, Published on: 1 March 2016

Sierra Leone’s Supreme Court ruled in favour of the Socfin Agricultural Company (Socfin Group) concerning the abuses committed, since 2013, by 6 persons (oil palm damaging) in its plantation. It is regrettable that certain organisations interpret this as a lack of independence on behalf of Sierra Leone’s judicial institutions, which in their daily work, contribute to their country’s development...Sierra Leone’s Minister of Agriculture, after having visited the LAC plantation (Socfin) in Liberia in 2009, decided to call on the Socfin Group to develop a project in his country...Subsequently, a process of upward dialogue was embarked upon together with all stakeholders :farmers, landlords, traditional and community chiefs...At that time, a majority of village farmers decided to participate in a project with SAC, while others refrained from doing so...Consequently, these symbolic actions (abuses), supported by external associations are likely to weaken the relations developed over time locally. At various occasions, so-called « associations representing the villagers » turned out not to be representing neither legally nor legitimately the local communities surrounding the plantation and are sometimes just protecting personal interests...

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This is a response from the following companies: Socfin