Cape Town, South Africa — The African Centre for Gender of the UN Economic Commission for Africa, has finalised a study on women and artisanal and small scale mining.
The study looks at six countries (Zambia, Tanzania, Ghana, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Guinea [Conakry] and Zimbabwe) and focuses on three pillars: legislation; financing; and partnerships between large scale and small scale mining. It was completed in partnership with UN Women and the African Minerals Development Centre (AMDC) and should be released by June 2016.
"Our study has identified some good practices and successful small scale miners who are women - we can showcase these examples and use them to influence policy at a national and continental level," says Thokozile Ruzvidzo, Co-ordinator for the Centre.
"What we need to look at is creating space for small-scale miners to have a voice at the official annual Mining Indaba in Cape Town, rather than just at the Alternative Mining Indaba which takes place outside the main activities. Member states are aware of the AMV and talk about it, but it calls for more domestication of the Vision and then translation into policy. And gender would be a big part of that."
Another clear issue is the lack of female representation in mining companies' senior management teams and boards.
"Diversity in management is key. We need to hear contributions that reflect 50% of the workforce and citizens. Female leaders bring innovation and ideas from a different perspective, and enhance productivity. We are calling for the private sector to put more women more senior executive positions. We're also calling for the public sector to engage women in order to boost productivity from artisanal and small scale mining at the local level, and strengthen communities' resilience."
Notes on Africa Mining Vision:
Formally adopted by African heads of state in 2009, the Africa Mining Vision (AMV) is the continent's own response to tackling the paradox of great mineral wealth existing side by side with pervasive poverty. Simply put, the AMV outlines the roadmap to the transparent, equitable and optimal exploitation of mineral resources to underpin broad-based sustainable growth and socio-economic development in Africa.
For more information, please contact:
Ms. Daisy Leoncio
African Mineral Development Centre
or visit www.africaminingvision.org