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Regional News Thu, 18 Aug 2011

WACAM organises workshop for media practitioners, others

Tema, Aug 18, GNA - A capacity development workshop for 33 media practitioners and residents affected by mining in the Eastern Region, opened in Tema on Thursday.

The two-day workshop, organized by WACAM in collaboration with IBIS, a Dutch NGO, is aimed at creating awareness and building the capacities of the affected mining communities through focused education.

It is to bridge the capacity gap for effective engagement to keep a balance between improved economies within a sustained environment. The participants would discuss an 93Overview of the Minerals and Mining Act;" 93Mining in Forest Reserves;" 93ECOWAS Directives and th= e Minerals Law of Ghana;" 93Mining and Environmental Justice: Roles of the Media, Communities, and NGOs;" and 93Surface Mining and Economic, Social, Environmental and Governance Issues," among other topics.

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Opening the Workshop, Mr Daniel Owusu-Koranteng, Executive Director of WACAM, expressed regret that the indigenous people whose lands were ceded to mining, faced many challenges when the communities with their weak technical and financial capacities, were compelled to have engagements on issues with multinational mining companies with enormous financial and lobbying capabilities. Mr Owusu-Koranteng pointed out that while the Minerals and Mining Law had adequate protection for the interest of mining companies, the protection of community rights in the same Law, could be depicted as 93fluid."

"The yawning gap in terms of the capacity of the affected communities and the mining companies has resulted in poor negotiation outcomes, which has been against the mining communities." This situation, the Executive Director said, had been the breeding grounds for conflicts in mining communities.

Source: GNA
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