Zambia’s High Court has granted an injunction against the government’s overturning of an earlier decision to reject a Large Scale Mining Licence for Zambezi Resources’ copper project in the Lower Zambezi National Park.
The court has stayed the decision of Lands, Natural Resources and Environmental Protection minister Harry Kalaba, pending the hearing of an appeal.
Action Aid Zambia Action Aid Zambia Country Director Pamela Chisanga who confirmed the development in the statement today, said an inter party hearing is scheduled for 18February 2014.
This follows the filing of an injunction on Friday 31 January by the Lusaka-based Community Based Natural Resource Management (CBNRM) Forum – supported by ActionAid Zambia -, which refutes claims made by the Minister that all potential impacts of the project would be addressed by cost effective measures and technologies.
Ms Chisanga says in the statement that : “We fully support the High Court’s decision to halt this project while the case undergoes an appeal. There are concerns raised by the Zambia Environmental Management Agency (ZEMA) as part of its rejection of the Environmental Impact Study (EIS) which must be seriously considered.
“The government has failed to address the negative impacts of mining on the livelihoods and wellbeing of citizens and it is strange that they have decided to authorise this project when Environmental Impact Study failed to meet the required standards.
“The rural communities who live in the areas around the park will certainly suffer if the mine goes ahead, particularly due to the pollution of their water sources.”
The CBNRM Forum is an umbrella organization of over 150 organisations and institutions which promotes community based approaches to sustainable management of natural resources, advocates for the formulation and implementation of appropriate legal and policy frameworks and development.
It also facilitates dialogue, development and adoption of best practices for sustainable utilization and management of natural resources. The CBNRM Forum is supported by ActionAid Zambia through the FGG (Fair Green and Global) Alliance.
On the other hand Action Aid is a global movement of people working together to further human rights for all and defeat poverty. The organization believes people in poverty have the power within them to create change for themselves, their families and communities. Action Aid is a catalyst for that change. http://www.actionaid.org/