New guidelines to ensure that mining companies live up to their social responsibilities are expected out soon. Under the guidelines, corporate-social responsibility to communities affected by mining would become a legal requirement.
This is a clear departure from the practice where mining companies determined what constitutes developmental projects for communities in their operational areas.
According to the Chief Executive of Minerals Commission, Bernard Aryee the guidelines will soon be tabled before Cabinet. He was speaking on JOY FM's current affairs program, front-page.
“In the past, it's strictly a voluntary thing”. The mines provided what they wanted to, more or less. The question is, is that what was relevant to the community?
So now government will want to work with the mining companies directly as a legal requirement to ensure that the interest of various stakeholders, - government, the mining companies, the local community as well as civil society generally are met. Government is working very keenly with each of the mines”.
The Co-ordinator of the NGO Third -World Network, Dr. Yao Graham, said mining companies and government must address issues of livelihood first.
This is because resettlement and monetary payment never make up loss of the affected communities.
“What we will like to see is for corporate-social responsibility to address issues such as social economic questions about livelihood in terms of how we approach the identification, processing and implementation of compensation and resettlement questions and some of the consequent relationships between communities and companies.
“Also include wider questions of employment very broadly put and we will look forward to these principles being put on the table and we hope we will get the chance to contribute,” Dr. Graham said on the program.