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KP to name NGO point person

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The Kimberley Process (KP) will soon finalise the appointment of a focal point person who will represent non-governmental organisations monitoring the mining and sale of diamonds from Chiadzwa fields, government has revealed.

Civil society organisations are deadlocked over the local focal point person after Nango nominated Farai Maguwu while the Civil Society Coalition picked Goodson Nguni.

Deputy Minister of Mines and Mining Development Gift Chimanikire yesterday said Zimbabwe was only a member of the KP but had no role to play in the decisions that were made by the diamond body.

“We are just a member of the KP as a country,” said Chimanikire. “However, government has no role to play at all in choosing who the local focal point person to represent civil society would be. It is the responsibility of the KP team.

“It is true that civil society are equal players to government in the KP concerning issues to do with diamond mining processes and even if they were to make any recommendations to the KP, those suggestions would be taken seriously,” said Chimanikire.

The KP called for the establishment of a joint workplan to include the Kimberley Process monitor, government and a local focal point person to examine the shipments of rough diamonds from Chiadzwa in Marange.

The plan would also look at other aspects like the ongoing demilitarisation of the area, the demarcation of mining areas, identification of small-scale miners and the development of licensing systems.

The establishment of diamond buying structures, tightening border controls and cross border cooperation with Mozambique, with a view to curbing smuggling and illicit trade of Marange diamonds would also be part of its mandate.

Zimbabwe recognised the need to take such measures as stipulated by the KP as well as the need to have a local focal point person to work with the KP monitor Abbey Chikane.

The requirements by the KP for the local focal point person include possession of technical and KP-related expertise and representation of civil society.

However, Nguni’s group said the requirements were unrealistic as there was no person in the country with such qualifications, while Nango have stood by Maguwu’s appointment, on the basis that he had a lot of experience with diamond-related issues.

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