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Samantha Cole | All Africa | 15 September 2016
Today is exactly one year since public reports of the UN 2015 Geneva “criticism” of Canadian Mining Companies.
On September 15, 2015, online media reports exposed the UN Human Rights Committee discussions in Geneva, Switzerland in which there was much focus on the activities of mining companies from Canada.
In the usual non-committal manner in which the UN does everything, the Human Rights Committee “addressed a series of concerns” about the problems caused by Canadian mining companies who operate mines around the world.
Was that was the best they could do?
Only to address concerns?
Women are being raped, men are being killed, village homes are being destroyed, environments are being poisoned, in certain areas in the world, these Canadian mining companies are causing devastation and misery beyond description and the most these UN officials were able to come up with, was that they “addressed a series of concerns”.
An article published by “The Diplomat” on September 15, 2015, reported:
It is undisputed that the Canadian Government has ignored the complaints about mining companies operating overseas. The Government is perfectly aware of the public scandals of mining companies involving illegal activities such as corruption, bribery and fraud, not to mention murder, violence, rape, environmental disasters, etc – but they take no notice.
The Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) have a special unit to investigate Canadian companies operating overseas who are reported to be involved in corruption or fraud or other illegal activities. The RCMP will bring these Canadian mining giants such as Barrick Gold to account for their corruption and fraud activities overseas.
Similarly, in the UK, the Serious Fraud Unit (SFO) have been very successful in the past year cracking down on British companies who are guilty of corruption, fraud and other such crimes in Africa.
Acacia Mining, Barrick’s daughter company, has had a shocking run over the past 14 months in Tanzania since Bloomberg...
What if our government really wanted to save money?
As well as going after $6.7 billion in its omnibus savings bill, it could go after the billions more it costs to run our immigration detention centres: $9.2 billion in the past three years, $3.9 billion to $5.5 billion in the next four, according to the most complete accounting yet of the costs normally hidden in inaccessible parts of the the budget.
It comes as an Audit Office report identifies the cost per offshore detainee: a gobsmacking $573,100 per year.
For that price – $1570 per day – we could put them up in a Hyatt and pay them the pension 15 times over.
It costs less than half that, $200,000 a year, to house a typical onshore prisoner; a mere fraction of that, $72,000 including super, to pay a typical full-time worker, and just $20,700 a year to pay a full pensioner.
Ninety-nine per cent of the population don't come anywhere near $573,100 a year in income or cost. The census stops asking when income sails past $156,000.
But the comparison with wages isn't strictly valid. It understates the outrageousness of the $573,100 price tag. The $573,100 isn't being paid in return for a detainee's labour, in return for a contribution to society, as are wages. It is being paid to prevent the detainee contributing to society. It is what economists call a deadweight loss. We get nothing in return for it, apart from less of what we could have had.
And perhaps because it is not meant to make economic sense (and perhaps because the Department of Immigration and Border Protection has operated as something of a law unto itself), it hasn't even made financial sense.
The Audit Office says the department breached public service guidelines by not conducting proper tenders for the contracts to provide services to Manus Island and Nauru, at times falsely claiming it faced urgent and unforeseen circumstances.
"The available record does not indicate that urgent or unforeseen circumstances existed," the Audit Office says. "The record suggests that the department first selected the provider and then commenced a process to determine the exact nature, scope and price of the services to be delivered."
The department's approach to selecting one provider to service both centres from 2014 "removed competition from the outset". There is no record of staff completing conflict-of-interest declarations, no record of the checks that would have discovered that a director of one of the subcontractors had faced bribery charges and was later acquitted.
After being selected without a proper tender, the new provider extracted an extra $1.1 billion from Australian taxpayers, which was agreed to without going back to the contractors who had just been sacked. The price per detainee shot up from $201,000 to $573,100.
Astonishingly, the report says the department didn't tell its minister at the time, Scott Morrison, that the deal required the Commonwealth to pay a "significant premium over and above the historical costs". Nor did it tell him the price per head.
The department was not only shielded from public accountability, it also managed to hide things from its minister.
UNICEF and Save the Children get the $9.2 billion figure in their report At What Cost? from the numbers scattered around various parts of the official record. They say there are less specific other costs they haven't included, among them regular independent and senate inquiries, the defence of High Court challenges, and compensation for detention centre employees who have suffered as a result of what they have been expos...
Jadi beban yang dipikul anak mudah Papua tidak hanya soal makan dan minum seperti kebanyakan anak mudah lainya di Indonesia. Poin ini menandakan bahwa anak muda Papua sangat berbedah jauh dengan kebanyakan anak mudah di Indonesia yang berpikirnya hanya, kuliah, diterima di lapangan pekerjaan, sukses, dan menghidupi keluarga.Kedua- Kebanyakan anak mudah Papua sulit bersaing karena negara membunuh mereka secara psikologis. Kata-kata seperti Papua itu tertinggal, terbelakang, bodok, dan manusia setengah binatang (seperti kasus Yogya belum lama ini). Hal-hal ini menandakan, anak mudah Papua tidak hanya di bunuh secara fisik tetapi juga secara psikologis sehingga membunuh jiwa dan mental bersaing mereka.
Cecilia Jamasmie | Mining.com | 16 September 2016
Canada’s Barrick Gold Corp confirmed Thursday a new spill at its Veladero mine in the San Juan province of Argentina and said it has temporarily suspended operations pending further inspections of the mine’s heap leach area.
The fresh spill happened on Sep. 8, when a pipe carrying process solution in the heap leach area was struck by a large block of ice that had rolled down the heap leach valley slope, Barrick said in the statement. A small quantity of solution left the leach pad as a result.
While the gold giant, the world’s largest by output, did not mention cyanide in its press release, local newspaper El Clarín reports (in Spanish) that Barrick authorities in Argentina have confirmed that was the case.
“The incident did not pose any threat to the health of employees, communities or the environment,” Barrick said in the statement.
Earlier this year, the Toronto-based miner was ordered to pay a 145.7m pesos or $9.8m fine over a cyanide spill at the same mine, which happened almost exactly a year ago.
When Barrick announced the fine in March, it said it had undertaken a plan to strengthen controls and safeguards at the mine, including increased water monitoring.
Regarding the new incident, the company noted it would work with provincial authorities to confirm the integrity and safety of the heap leach facility as quickly as possible, beginning today.
Veladero, one of the largest gold mines in Argentina, produced 602,000 ounces last year. Proven and probable mineral reserves as of December 31, 2015, were 7.5 million ounces of gold. Gold production in 2016 is expected to be 630,000-690,000 ounces at all-in sustaining costs of $830-$900 per ounce according to the company’s website.
Barrick said it didn’t expect the incident to have a material effect on its 2016 operating guidance for the mine.
The Nature Conservancy, one of the world’s largest ‘conservation’ organistions, is supporting the expansion of large-scale mining in the Solomon Islands, and perpetuating the myth of ‘sustainable mining’
“With good planning and management and meaningful inputs from communities and women, the Solomon Islands has a fantastic opportunity to pave the way for a more sustainable minerals sector”
Of course TNC can’t point to anywhere in the world where this utopian dream exists, international mining companies respecting indigenous communities and caring for the environment, but lets just keep selling the dream…
Mining a Better Future for the Solomon Islands
The Nature Conservancy | National Geographic | 15 September 2015
The Solomon Islands are facing dramatic and imminent changes from large-scale mining across the country. Without proper planning and access to information, developments like mining will jeopardize the natural resources upon which most Solomon Islanders depend. With 85 percent of Solomon Islanders living in rural areas, they rely on their natural resources for food, shelter and income. The negative impacts of mining could change their lives forever.
Large deposits of gold, copper, nickel and bauxite have been identified across the country. Despite strong interest and intense prospecting, there has only ever been one fully operational mine in the country, which means communities and government agencies have little experience working with the mining sector. In addition, the Solomon Islands government has highlighted their limited capacity to manage the complex demands of regulating, managing and overseeing the mining development process. While mining offers opportunities for economic development, without adequate management, it also poses direct and urgent threats to livelihoods, culture and social well-being.
The Nature Conservancy is working with community groups to hold workshops and provide information through a program called “What Is Mining?”. This has been designed to help Solomon Islanders understand the impact mining could have on their lives and their natural resources. We partnered with community-based women’s groups in particular to both ensure that women were a part of the conversation and to empower women to make their voices heard.
In collaboration with the Isabel Mothers’ Union, we have trained 40 community facilitators who are raising awareness about the importance of well-informed and inclusive decisions around big issues such as mining. To date, this work has reached over 12,000 people in remote communities, and their input is informing the national mining policy reform process.
The mining awareness work led to the first-ever national mining forum. The Conservancy facilitated the event that inspired the...
I CARE - - News - Internet Centre Anti Racism Europe:
11/9/2016- The far-right candidate in Austria's presidential
election has backtracked on a plan to confine asylum seekers to
islands. Norbert Hofer told a German magazine he had changed his
mind about the proposal made by Austrian Foreign Minister Sebastian
Kurz to send refugees to designated islands off mainland Europe
while their asylum applications were processed. Mr Kurz is believed
to have copied the plan from Mr Hofer's Freedom Party after seeing
how popular the far-right politician had become, but Mr Hofer now
says the idea went “too far” and was “excessive, to put it
diplomatically”. Mr Kurz responded by framing the issue as a matter
of either stopping refugees from leaving islands like Lesbos in
Greece, where they often arrive from outside the EU, or letting
them travel on into mainland Europe.
A spokesman for the politician told local media: “If you are honest about the issue, then you have to openly address the current situation in Italy. "The migrants come to the hotspots on the islands and from there are carried to the mainland rather than being stopped and transported back." Mr Kurz’s spokesman challenged Mr Hofer to admit his policy reversal actually amounted to "waving on" refugees, into the mainland. Imprisoning refugees on islands is a popular policy among far-right politicians, with Mr Hofer's German and Dutch equivalents sticking by similar proposals. The plans are inspired by Australia, which confines migrants to offshore facilities such as those on Nauru and Papua New Guinea, both independent foreign territories. Human rights groups have criticised the practice as inhumane and a breach of international law. Several detainees in Nauru have attempted suicide by setting themselves on fire.
Dear brothers and sisters,
On behalf of the people of West Papua I would like to once again wish all our Papua New Guinean family a very Happy Independence Day.
We are One People with One Soul and One Tumbuna. Together we West Papuans and Papua New Guineans are fellow Melanesians and are proud to celebrate PNG’s Independence Day. I want to tell our brothers and sisters in PNG; your West Papuan family is so proud of you and of your 41 years of Independence and freedom. Every day we pray, every day we cry and everyday we dream about living in a free Melanesian country too.
While PNG is a free country, we your Melanesian brothers and sisters in West Papua continue to live under the brutal colonial rule and the terror of the Indonesian military. I always tell our family in PNG that for us West Papuans, every day in the village, every day in the city; every day in the garden, the forest, the mountain, the river, the solwara is a day of fear and threat. While animals can cross this border and go where they like freely, we West Papuans are not free to go anywhere at all without fear; even on our own ancestral land.
We West Papuans are inspired by PNG’s Independence and we pray that this year our PNG brothers and sisters will continue to remember their fellow Melanesians in West Papua who are still suffering under colonialism and still str...
Papua New Guinea (PNG) is a diverse country of over 800 different languages spread over remote and diverse terrain. Bringing a country like this together was always going to be challenging. This post describes how the many differences were put aside when a young boxer from Tsio Island represented PNG, just after its independence, at the Montreal Commonwealth Games in 1978.
The building of a nation
In June 1972, the Constitutional Planning Committee was established by a motion of the chief minister. The primary task of the committee was to recommend a constitution for the ‘full internal self-government of a united Papua New Guinea’ (Constitutional Planning Committee Report 1974, p. 2). The committee had a large task in front of it. It would ultimately determine what kind of political system this new country was going to have.
As a way of guiding its deliberations, the committee articulated a number of underlying principles. The first was nation-building. For true nation-building, the constitution would need to be homegrown and the result of ‘active and meaningful participation’ for all people of PNG (ibid.: 13). It needed to bring al...
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