Tanzania: RAID report claims Acacia's grievance mechanism "disempowers victims"; includes company's response & RAID's rejoinder

In a recent letter to Acacia's Board, RAID claims that rather than providing relief and compensation, the company's grievance process disempowers victims and subjects them to a humiliating process. It permits the company to act as investigator, judge and jury on the serious human rights violations committed by its security personnel and/or the  police working alongside them. 

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Article
8 July 2019

RAID's rejoinder to Acacia's subsidiary's response

Author: Rights & Accountability in Development (UK)

"Re: 13 June 2019 letter – Acacia’s grievance process and agreement with police at North Mara"

We write in reference to your letter to RAID, dated 13 June 2019, which was a response to our letter of 11 June 2019 addressed to Acacia’s Board of Directors.

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Article
4 July 2019

Acacia claims its grievance mechanism meets the UNGPs effectiveness criteria

Author: Acacia Mining

"Acacia's reponse to RAID’s letter to Acacia’s Board of 11 June 2019"

...Second, you suggest that the Mine should suspend the operation of its Community Grievance Process, a process established in accordance with the United Nations Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights (UNGPs). As you know and as can been seen on Acacia’s website, the CGP was recently updated to further align in with the effectiveness criteria set out in the UNGPs on the basis of extensive consultation with the community and international and Tanzanian experts. As noted above, you have failed, despite many invitations, communications and meetings on the subject, to provide any constructive response to the detailed and reasoned rebuttals we have made to your unfounded and unprincipled criticisms of the CGP following its revision. You also misrepresent the extensive engagement that has gone on between us over many years. You know well that it simply is not true that my November 2018 letter is the only response you have received on the subject of the CGP. The extensive correspondence on the subject from both Acacia and NMGML is available on the Acacia website: https://www.acaciamining.com/sustainability/grievance-process/gp-english....

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Report
4 July 2019

Full Report on Acacia's grievance mechanism

Author: Rights & Accountability in Development (UK)

"Human Rights Violations Under Private Control: Acacia Mining’s Grievance Mechanism and the Denial of Rights"

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Report
4 July 2019

Full Report on Acacia's grievance mechanism

Author: Rights & Accountability in Development (UK)

"Human Rights Violations Under Private Control: Acacia Mining’s Grievance Mechanism and the Denial of Rights"

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Article
4 July 2019

RAID urges Acacia to suspend its grievance mechanism due to alleged inconsistency with UNGPs

Author: Rights & Accountability in Development (UK)

"Acacia Mining Faces New Human Rights Problems in Tanzania"

UK gold mining company, Acacia Mining, is facing increased pressure to address human rights concerns at its North Mara gold mine in Tanzania and to suspend the company’s problematic grievance process...[RAID says the] mine’s grievance process...permits victims to bring complaints to the mine for abuses they have suffered, including by the police. But rather than providing relief and compensation, the grievance process disempowers victims and subjects them to a humiliating process. It permits the company to act as investigator, judge and jury on the serious human rights violations committed by its security personnel and/or the  police working alongside them.

In a new report released today, based on in-depth research with over 90 victims and witnesses, RAID found that Acacia’s grievance mechanism at the North Mara mine is failing victims and local residents and is a far cry from being compliant with the United Nation Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights, the standard business corporations are expected to apply...

 RAID called on Acacia’s Board to suspend the grievance process pending external review by independent experts, assist local judicial authorities to bring the perpetrators to account and provide immediate humanitarian assistance to those harmed.  “Acacia Mining is facing a host of problems that undermine its reputation and its ability to operate in Tanzania, but surely none is more important than avoiding killings and injuries as a result of the company’s operations,” said Van Woudenberg. “Acacia’s Board should follow Bristow’s lead, publicly acknowledge the human rights issues at the North Mara mine and take urgent steps to rectify them.”

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Article
4 July 2019

RAID's letter urging Acacia's Board to suspend grievance mechanism due to alleged

Author: Rights & Accountability in Development (UK)

"Letter to Acacia Mining's Board"

In light of your upcoming Annual General Meeting on 13 June 2019, we write to once again raise the human rights situation at Acacia Mining’s North Mara Gold Mine. In light of the ongoing lack of justice for serious human rights violations at the mine over many years, and the clear unsuitability of the company’s grievance mechanism to provide a fair and suitable remedy to the scores of victims, we believe it is vital that Acacia considers ending its agreement with the Tanzania police to provide security at the mine...

Secondly, closely related to the ongoing and serious human rights abuses, is the deeply flawed grievance process Acacia is operating at North Mara which aggravates the harm to victims.The UN Guiding Principles require that grievance mechanisms be “rights-compatible’ and warn that poorly designed or implemented grievance mechanisms heighten the sense of disempowerment and disrespect experienced by those using such processes. In our view, Acacia’s seriously flawed grievance mechanism falls into that category and is not compliant with the UN Guiding Principles. We urge you to suspend the existing grievance mechanism pending an independent review of the grievance process by a respected, internationally recognised third party, such as the UN Working Group on business and human rights, with a view to incorporating the repeated critiques made by victims, Tanzanian and international civil society...

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