HomeNewsGovt urged to stop signing opaque contracts with foreign investors

Govt urged to stop signing opaque contracts with foreign investors

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CIVIL society group, Publish What You Pay, has expressed concern over lack of transparency and accountability in the mining sector and urged the government to stop signing opaque contracts with international conglomerates.

BY VENERANDA LANGA

The civil society group’s co-ordinator, Darlington Chiyambwa, raised the issue at a media briefing in Harare last week.

“We also do not have aggregated data that shows us how much revenue we get in the mining sector,” he said.

“While there are no problems with financial reporting by big multinational companies like Zimplats, the biggest challenge is that there is no financial reporting by joint ventures and one cannot access financial statements of companies like Zimbabwe Consolidated Diamond Company.

“Even the Auditor-General could not get their financial statements for auditing, and there are glaring financial issues with those companies,” he said.

Muyambwa said there was also lack of transparency on community share ownership trusts (CSOTs).

He cited the example of the Zimunya Marange CSOT, which was initially promised $50 million capital injection by diamond mining companies, before the latter reneged on their pledge.

In 2009, civic society unsuccessfully pushed for a framework to ensure transparency in the mineral sector after realising that the Mines and Minerals Act was silent on the issue.

“We also needed transparency in the quantum and quality of our minerals, but we never got it. There is no exploration, and in Marange there was guesswork and we now hear that alluvial diamonds are finished,” Muyambwa said.

Publish What You Pay is a global campaign centred on transparency and accountability in the mining sector to ensure companies publish what they are paying to government.

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