African Coalition for Corporate Accountability
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ACCA communication regarding the clash between the Kenyan re-elections and ACCA General Assembly 2017 dates

Dear ACCA community,

Following our discussions with the ACCA Steering Committee members, our ACCA member organisations in Kenya, and with our partner organisations involved in this year's General Assembly, it was unanimously decided that it would be best to postpone this year's GA, and associated side-events, to the week of 13 November 2017. The ACCA GA will take place from 14-16 November 2017. All those that were consulted in the process also advised that the GA and associated side-events be moved out of Kenya, for a number of reasons. As such, and due to the circumstances, the GA will again take place in South Africa this year.

We stand by our friends and colleagues in Kenya during the upcoming elections. We hope these new dates will still permit all those that had intended on attending the GA to do so, and look forward to hosting you in South Africa.

If you have any questions or concerns, please don't hesitate to contact me.

Kind regards,

Damian

A word from the editor (August 2017)

Warm greetings to the ACCA community.

The upcoming ACCA General Assembly will be taking place in Nairobi, Kenya from 17-19 October. The theme for this year’s General Assembly is access to remedy. This theme was selected by the ACCA Steering Committee members for two main reasons: access to remedy is one of the themes of the ACCA working group and the theme for this year’s annual UN Forum on Business and Human Rights is access to remedy.

Read more: A word from the editor...

Demand for Bank’s due diligence saves communities from harm

Elias from CFJ talking to community members in Chimamba village about the project

In February 2017, the World Bank made a decision not to finance the Lilongwe Water project in Malawi. This was a $290 million development project to be partly funded by the World Bank ($71m) aimed at expanding access to water services in Lilongwe district and improving the financial and operational performance of the Lilongwe Water Board. The project involved investments in the Diamphwe Multipurpose Dam, a water treatment plant and a water transmission line.

Read more: Demand for Bank’s due...

Escalating threats in Lamu, Kenya interferes with communities’ right to public participation

Lamu Community in Kenya

At the heart of Accountability Counsel’s cases are community members who were denied their basic right to participate in decisions that critically impact their lives.  Powerful actors – governments, companies, banks – exclude community voices from “development” projects, predictably leading to serious harm.

Read more: Escalating threats in Lamu,...

Urgent appeal for Gender Representation at 4th ACCA GA - Registration deadline extended

Dear ACCA community,

We would like to thank everyone who applied for funding to attend the 4th ACCA General Assembly. However, we have noticed that the applicants are overwhelmingly male. Bearing in mind that the ACCA aspires to achieve gender equality, which includes equal opportunities to participate in ACCA activities, we would like to extend the deadline for women representatives from within ACCA to register for the upcoming GA to 24 July 2017.

The online form may be found here.

For any queries, please don't hesitate to contact the ACCA Secretariat.

Kind regards,

Damian Oakes

Access to remedy: a legal empowerment approach to environmental justice in Kenya

Kenya’s country’s Vision 2030 places emphasis on trade, industrial expansion and infrastructure development (Kenya’s Vision 2030). An example of industrial expansion is the nation’s salt industry. The majority of the salt industry is located in the coastal areas where six privately owned salt manufacturing industries are based.

Read more: Access to remedy: a legal...

2nd ACCA SC meeting

Thanks to the grant approval from the 11th Hour Project, ACCA SC members convened as part of the 2nd in-person Steering Committee members meeting which took place in Abuja, Nigeria from 11-13 January. Abiodun Baiyewu-Teru, together with her team at Global Rights Nigeria, hosted the meeting and treated SC members to Nigerian hospitality. The list of SC members who attended the meeting included:

Read more: 2nd ACCA SC meeting

Peace on the horizon for Mukungwe gold mine?

The discovery of gold around 1970 changed the landscape of this village. Gold was discovered when a cow grazing in the pastures stumbled and slid, exposing a piece of the land where a gold nugget laid. This discovery marked the beginning of the Mukungwe gold rush. Traditional authorities claim that while the surface of the land does not belong to them, the subsoil belongs to them, thus making them the rightful owners of the gold. The Chunu clan disagreed with this claim. This disagreement sparked a conflict between the parties. To make matters worse, the leader of the Chunu clan involved Rubango (head of another family) in the feud.

Read more: Peace on the horizon for...

The Grand Inga – a false solution to energy poverty

The Grand Inga hydropower scheme in the Democratic Republic of Congo will be located on the Congo River, near the city of Matadi, about 250km southwest of Kinshasa and 150 km upstream of the Congo Estuary. When built, the Grand Inga would form the world’s largest hydropower scheme, on the lower end of the Congo River, with a capacity of 40,000 MW, enough power to supply one-third of the current electricity demand in Sub-Saharan Africa (except for South Africa). SADC, NEPAD, SAPP have listed the Grand Inga as a priority project for the region because of this huge potential power.

Read more: The Grand Inga – a false...

CSOs of la Francophonie convene in Madagascar

From 2–4 November 2016, the 10th Conference of International Non-Governmental Organisations and Civil Society Organisations accredited to la Francophonie took place in Tanarive, Madagascar at Colbert hotel. The Secretary General of la Francophonie, Madame Michaelle Jean, and Administer of the International Organisation of la Francophonie (OIF), Monsieur Adama Ouane were present at the meeting.

Read more: CSOs of la Francophonie...

A word from the editor (December 2016)

The end of year provides a moment to reflect on achievements made within that year. In terms of the ACCA, 2016 has been a year with positive developments for our relatively young Coalition. Undoubtedly, the first in-person ACCA Steering Committee meeting and the 3rd ACCA General Assembly were both important and fruitful ACCA events during which much progress was made for our Coalition.

Read more: A word from the editor...

ACCA co-Chairs convene in Geneva 

From 14- 16 November 2016, the 2 co-Chairs of the ACCA Steering Committee together with the Coordinator attended the UN Forum on Business and Human Rights which took place at the Palais des Nations Unies in Geneva, Switzerland. ACCA managed to secure a stand where interested parties present at the Forum to get information on the ACCA and its activities.

Read more: ACCA co-Chairs convene in...

11th Hour Project: Connect 2016

From 26 to 28 October, the 11th Hour Project Connect 2016 event took place in San Francisco, USA. Present at the event was the ACCA Coordinator along with ACCA member organisations which include: ADEV, International Rivers, CECIDE, International Rivers and Lien De Brouckere.

Read more: 11th Hour Project: Connect...

International Rivers: Guide for Communities to be Impacted by the Inga 3 Dam

International Rivers published a guide entitled: "A Guide for Communities to be impacted by the Inga 3 Dam". This guide is intended for communities who risk being displaced, whether physically (losing access to land or home) or economically (losing assets or access to resources for income and livelihood) by the construction and operation of the Inga 3 Dam project. This guide has contributions from Rudo Sanyanga, Kirk Herbertson and Lien De Brouckere. Click here to download the guide in English. 



Summary of the national workshop in Lubumbashi

The Open Society Institute for Southern Africa (OSISA) and Southern African Resources Watch (SARW) jointly organised a national workshop in Lubumbashi aimed female journalists and members of human rights NGOs from the following provinces: Haut-Katanga, le Lualaba, Central-Congo, Kasai and Maniema. The training took place in Lubumbashi, DRC at Park Hotel's Grand Hall, from 02 to 06 May 2016.

Read more: Summary of the national...

Press Release: ACCA 3rd General Assembly, University of Pretoria, South Africa

From 6 – 7 July 2016, the African Coalition for Corporate Accountability (ACCA) hosted its 3rd General Assembly at the University of Pretoria, South Africa. The event was attended by approximately 110 people, which included a larger number of ACCA members, as well as a small number of external participants and students. The ACCA Steering Committee also used the opportunity to have two separate meetings, during which internal matters related to the ACCA were discussed.

Read more: Press Release: ACCA 3rd...

ACCA SC Members Convene in Nairobi for the First ACCA SC Members Meeting

Prior to the ACCA Steering Committee (SC) meeting, the ACCA SC members had brainstorming sessions on how best to drive the Coalition forward. Using these sessions as a backdrop, it was decided to kick-start this ambitious project by hosting the first-ever ACCA SC in-person meeting. Planning for the meeting began in January of this year which led to the convening of ACCA SC Members in Nairobi, Kenya, from 15 – 16 February 2016.

Read more: ACCA SC Members Convene in...

A word from the editor (March 2016)

It is a pleasure to write to the members of the African Coalition for Corporate Accountability (ACCA), at the start of what promises to be a busy and productive year for ACCA. While we have a number of key events to come, the first quarter of 2016 has gotten off to a good start for the ACCA, with several events and important meetings taking place across the continent and elsewhere already.

Read more: A word from the editor...

Applying the UN Guiding Principles by Business and Extractive Industries Remains Problematic in the DRC

The 4th UN Forum on Business and Human Rights took place in Geneva, Switzerland from 16th to 18th November 2015; an initiative of the UN Counsel of Human Rights under the leadership of the Working Group on Business and Human Rights. The organisation Justice Pour Tous attended the event and presented a paper on the respect of the UN Guiding Principles by Extractive Industries.

Read more: Applying the UN Guiding...

7th Global Conference in Lima, 23 to 26 February 2016: From Reports to Results

 The Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative’s (EITI) flagship event in extractive resource governance, which takes place every two years, was held from 24th to 25th February in Lima, Peru. EITI is a global standard that seeks to promote open and accountable management of natural and extractive resources. It brings together business, government, civil society organisations and community based organisations. This was the 7th EITI Global Conference. The EITI Global Conference was preceded by the Publish What You Pay (PWYP) Global Assembly that was held from the 22nd to 23rd of February 2016.

Read more: 7th Global Conference in...

Alternative Mining Indaba: "Making Natural Resources Work for the People – Leaving No One Behind”

Civil society organisations, academics, Faith Based Organisations, the media, community based organisations, Pan-African networks and organisations, mining-affected communities and international partners convened for the 7th Alternative Mining Indaba (AMI) under the theme “Making Natural Resources Work for the People, – Leaving No One Behind” which took place from 8th to the 11th of February 2016 in Cape Town, South Africa. This year’s event attracted more than 350 participants. Since its inception in 2010, the AMI has become a platform where mining-affected communities, in particular, and relevant parties involved shared experiences, strategies to mobilise, advocacy and continuous development of strategic tools to challenge the powers that be in the extractive sector.

Read more: Alternative Mining Indaba:...

Press Release: ACCA Steering Committee Members Convene in Nairobi from 15 to 16 February 2016 for the first ACCA SC Meeting

From 15 – 16 February 2016, ACCA Steering Committee (SC) Members convened in Nairobi, Kenya. This marked the first in‐person SC Meeting since the SC members were elected, and provided the Steering Committee members with the unique opportunity to collectively engage with the ACCA Coordinator.

Read more: Press Release: ACCA Steering...

A word from the editor (December 2015)

This year brought some interesting developments for ACCA. As the Coalition’s first full-time coordinator, I quickly realised that I had big shoes to fill. The support from our colleagues both on the African continent and abroad is most promising, and interest in our work is steadily increasing. Indeed, the ACCA has the potential to become a truly continental coalition working towards corporate accountability in African, and an influential voice in the international arena.

Read more: A word from the editor...

AFREWATCH

African Resources Watch (AFREWATCH) is a non-governmental organisation which was established on 5 December 2013 following years of social degradation in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC). AFREWATCH was established by a multidisciplinary team of experts whose goal was to guarantee transparency in the extraction of natural resources in Africa as a means of ensuring socioeconomic development of the people of Africa.

Read more: AFREWATCH

The Environmental Impact of Mining and Logging Projects by Chinese Investors in East Kasai, DRC

In line with the “China-Africa project for the improvement of governance and forest resource governance” headed up by the International Institute for Environment and Development DRDC (IIED), and established by the WWF together with the Natural Resources Network, a multiparty stakeholder workshop was held from 8th to 9th August 2015 at the Regional Counsel of Non-Governmental Organisations for the development of the East Kasai (CRONGD)’s offices. The purpose of the workshop was to share the results of the study and discuss the current situation regarding Chinese investment and trends in land usage in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC).

Read more: The Environmental Impact of...

People’s Forum on Business and Human Rights

The International Network for Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (ESCR-net) and the Kenya Human Rights Commission (KHRC) organised the 4th People’s Forum on Business and Human Rights which took place from 26th to 28th October, at the Sarova Panafric Hotel in Nairobi, Kenya. A total of 43 participants from all corners of the globe converged in Kenya with the overarching objective of reviewing the progress made, collectively defining new strategies in addressing issues of human rights abuses by TNCs, and establishing a common agenda between the members of the network and its partners for 2016.

Read more: People’s Forum on Business...

ZAMI 2015: Advancing New Thinking on Engagement for Sustainable Mining

Over 250 delegates participated in this year’s Zimbabwe Alternative Mining Indaba (ZAMI) which took place in Bulawayo from 23rd – 24th September 2015 at Holiday Inn Hotel. The annual gathering, which was organised by the Zimbabwe Environmental Law Association (ZELA), Zimbabwe Council of Churches (ZCC) and Zimbabwe Coalition on Debt and Development (ZIMCODD), has become the first alternative space in which communities, civil society organisations, mining companies, legislators and the executive of government engaged in real conversations on events shaping mineral resource governance in Zimbabwe.

Read more: ZAMI 2015: Advancing New...

ACCA Statement: Annual UN Forum on Business and Human Rights (2015)

ACCA commends the UN Working Group on Business and Human Rights (Working Group) for convening the 4th Annual Forum on Business and Human Rights in Geneva (Forum), from 16 – 18 November 2015. The Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) serves as the global convener on human rights issues, and to this end, ACCA sees the Forum as an important opportunity to hear from all key stakeholders.

Read more: ACCA Statement: Annual UN...

Exploring Business and Human Rights in Malawi

As business in Africa experiences exponential growth and attracts foreign investors to the continent, so are the expectations of its citizens for greater accountability and transparency from both their government and businesses operating within their respective borders. Southern Africa’s abundance of natural resources attracts both international and national companies to Malawi’s borders. This explains, in part, why the topic of business and human rights is quickly becoming a focal point within the sub-region.

Read more: Exploring Business and Human...

Insight on Damian Oakes

By way of introduction, my name is Damian Oakes. I completed my undergraduate studies in International Relations and French. Thereafter, I completed an Honours degree in French. During my post graduate studies, I completed a language immersion programme in France during which I worked as a language assistant teaching English as a foreign language at Lycée Gabriel Fauré in Annecy, France. I completed my Masters’ degree in Interpreting and Translation (French to English) whilst focusing on international relations and human rights related issues.

Read more: Insight on Damian Oakes

ZELA Appeals for Corporate Accountability in Zimbabwe

The Zimbabwe Environmental Law Association (ZELA) is a public interest organisation that promotes the rights of marginalized and vulnerable communities in areas rich in natural resources through ensuring good governance in the environmental and natural resources sector. Since ZELA’s inception, its primary focus has been the advancement of community rights through legal instruments.

Read more: ZELA Appeals for Corporate...

Justice For All

Justice For All (Justice Pour Tous) is a Congolese organisation created on 7th April 1995. Its main office is located in Bukavu, in the South Kivu Province of the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). Justice for All’s raison d’être seeks to accompany vulnerable and marginalised communities through empowerment programmes for peace-building, restoration of socio-economic rights, access to basic healthcare services, sustainable protection of the environment and natural ecosystems, working towards the sound management of natural resources along with the fight against poverty. 

Read more: Justice For All

Synopsis on the Roundtable on Diamond Mining in the Kasai region

In line with the goal of promoting economic and social justice and improving mining governance in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) and the Kasai region, more specifically, the Regional Council of Development NGO’s le Conseil Régional des Organisations Non Gouvernementales de Développement (CRONGD) with the support of the Open Society Initiative for Southern Africa (OSISA), arranged a roundtable discussion on diamond mining in the Kasai region.

Read more: Synopsis on the Roundtable...

Report on the Second Meeting of the ACCA

In late September, almost 60 participants coming from 19 African countries representing 45 civil society member organizations, funders and friends of the African Coalition for Corporate Accountability (ACCA) met in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia for the Second Meeting of the ACCA.  We are delighted to share with you the full report of that meeting.

Read more: Report on the Second Meeting...

More than 60 ACCA Members gathered in Addis Ababa for Regional Meetings

After a number of internal discussions following the African Regional Forum on Business and Human Rights, the 88-member African Coalition for Corporate Accountability (ACCA) issued a statement outlining its impressions of the Forum that was held in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, Sept. 16 to 18.More than 60 people representing about 45 civil society organizations of the African Coalition for Corporate Accountability (ACCA) were gathered in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia last week to bring grassroots issues to a United Nations meeting at the African Regional Forum on Business and Human Rights, and to lay the structural foundation for the ACCA at its Second Meeting hosted by Global Rights.

Read more: More than 60 ACCA Members...

ACCA Coordinator Global Rights Hosts Side Event at UN African Regional Forum

In response to interest from ACCA member organizations, Global Rights is co-hosting a practical training session on “What to do when project impacts are in dispute?  Seeking solutions through participatory monitoring and joint fact-finding with companies, communities, CSOs, and government.”  This is a side event of the African Regional Forum on Business and Human Rights on September 16 from 9:30 to 1 pm.  

Read more: ACCA Coordinator Global...

Four ACCA Members in the Great Lakes Region Call on President Obama to Protect Virunga National Park

Four ACCA member organizations from the Great Lakes Region have joined in an open letter calling on President Obama to act to protect Virunga National Park: Centre de Recherche sur l’Environnement, la Démocratie et les Droits de l’Homme (CREDDHO); Réseau pour la Conservation et la Réhabilitation des Ecosystèmes Forestiers (Réseau CREF); Actions pour les Droits, l’Environnement et la Vie (ADEV); and Global Rights Alert (GRA).

Read more: Four ACCA Members in the...

African Civil Society Calls for Investment that Protects Human Rights at U.S.-Africa Leaders’ Summit

In the run-up to the first-ever U.S.-Africa Leaders Summit, 52 African civil society organizations have sent an open letter to U.S. President Barack Obama and the 50 invited African heads of state asking to participate and have local business and human rights priorities included in a forum that focuses on U.S. trade and foreign investment in Africa.

Read more: African Civil Society Calls...

African Coalition for Corporate Accountability Launched with Support of Global Rights

The first African regional civil society convening on human rights and business concluded with the launch of a new African Coalition for Corporate Accountability (ACCA). The meeting was held in late November 2013 in Accra, Ghana and hosted by Global Rights: Partners for Justice, with participants from civil society organizations from Sub-Saharan Africa. The ACCA members came together in solidarity to address similar, corporate-related human rights harms they face in their work supporting African communities and individuals who are impacted daily by the work of corporations, both multi-national and domestic.

Read more: African Coalition for...

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