Guinea: NedBank Tier II-01/Kintinian
Local community members.
Forced displacement from land, compensation, livelihood concerns.
At the time the complaint was filed IFC had an active project with Nedbank, which consists of a subordinated Tier II qualifying loan or instrument. IFC indicates that the project aims to facilitate Nedbank's longer-tenor lending programs for 1) black Economic Empowerment financing that will result in significant ownership transfer to previously-disadvantaged individuals and communities; 2) development and mortgage financing for the currently under-served affordable housing segment; and, 3) cross-border corporate lending across Africa, including capital intensive projects that support sustainable economic growth.
According to IFC, Nedbank is one of the leading South African banking groups. AngloGold Ashanti has received funding from Nedbank.
In April 2017, local community members neighboring the expansion of the Siguiri’s gold mine in Guinea filed a complaint with the CAO with the support of Centre de Commerce International pour le Developpement (“CECIDE”), Les Memes Droits Pour Tous (“MDT”), and Inclusive Development International (IDI). The complaint raises concerns with regard to the resettlement process conducted by a Guinean subsidiary of AngloGold Ashanti, la Société AngloGold Ashanti de Guinée S.A. (SAG) when a decision was taken to expand Siguiri’s gold mine in Guinea to the area where the complainants used to live (Area One). The complainants further allege that SAG has failed to properly compensate them after resettlement and to take adequate measures to restore their livelihoods.
CAO found the complaint eligible for assessment in June 2017 and conducted a field visit to Guinea in October 2017 to discuss options for addressing the complaint with the relevant parties. During the assessment process, the complainants and the IFC sub-client (SAG) expressed their desire to meet to exchange information about the issues raised in the complaint and to discuss next steps.
In April 2018, the complainants and SAG met to exchange information. During that meeting they agreed to commence a dispute resolution process and took the decision to keep the process confidential. The first joint meeting between the parties took place in July 2018 in Dakar, Senegal. During that meeting, the complainants made presentations on the social and economic impacts of their resettlement and provided SAG with their expectations for redressing the grievances raised in the complaint. The parties met again in October 2018 and in February 2019. During the February 2019 joint meeting, the parties reached and signed agreements on two of the issues under mediation: water and schooling. The parties further agreed to collaboratively expedite implementation of these two agreements. A joint statement to that effect is available (link below), in English and French, along with the assessment report and joint statements from the mediation sessions of April and September 2018. During the May 2019 joint meeting, the parties reached and signed agreements on two additional issues under mediation: 1. Compensation and Livelihood, 2. Human rights, Consultation and Information. The parties agreed to keep those agreements confidential and to publish only the final comprehensive settlement agreement once reached.
In February 2020, the parties, in the interest of the dispute resolution process, invited qualified experts to submit Expressions of Interest for the purposes of undertaking an independent study on resettlement, with deliverables including a Resettlement Assessment and a Livelihood Improvement Plan for the area where the communities have been resettled. The Expressions of Interest and Terms of Reference for the study are available in English and French under "Useful Links" below. As a result of that process, the parties interviewed candidates and jointly appointed an expert, who is currently undertaking the independent study.
CAO continues to monitor the implementation of the agreements reached in February and May 2019 and conducted an onsite monitoring visit in October 2019. CAO maintains continuous contact with the parties and discussions are ongoing on the most appropriate timing for the next joint meeting. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, CAO and the parties are unable to meet in person and are using virtual platforms to continue the dialogue process, which is ongoing.
Status as of February 9, 2021