The Council of Churches in Zambia (CCZ), the Joint Country Programme (JCP) and the Centre for Trade Policy and Development (CTPD) today launched the Maamba Community-Company Assessment (CCA) Report whose research was conducted between 15th and 22nd October 2017.
Southern Province Deputy Permanent Secretary Kennedy Malama who launched the report in Maamba’s Roman Catholic Hall on Thursday, 14th June 2016, commended the Council of Churches in Zambia (CCZ) for taking a special interest in advocating for transparency and accountability in the management of mineral resources in Zambia.
Mr Malama also congratulated the Nowergian Church Aid (NCA) and the Centre for Trade Policy and Development (CTPD) for undertaking a study on Community-Company Assessment (CCA) in Maamba.
Other notable figures that attended the launch of the report were Chief Mweemba of the Tonga speaking people of Maamba, a representative from Chief Sinazongwe and Sinazongwe District Commissioner Protashio Mulenga.
The CCA research was carried out to find constructive and peaceful solutions to divergent communities, government and company perspective in multiple contexts.
This was the first community-company assessment to be conducted with Maamba Collieries Limited (MCL).
But why Maamba township and not anywhere else? There are two reasons why. Firstly it was to assess how relationships have developed after the re-investment in MCL by Nava Bharat Ventures and secondly, it was for the development of the thermal plant which brought about increased mine activities in the area.
The research provided a good opportunity to compare the historical interactions of MCL under Zambia Consolidated Copper Mines (ZCCM) and that of the new majority share owner Nava Bharat Singapore Private Company limited.
During the research period, the team met with a wide variety of community, company and local government representatives and revealed that there were interactions between the residents of Maamba township and MCL.
However, the interactions were done through traditional, religious and civic leaders. It was during the research that the residents noted that there were some interactions through a Community Organisation called CCZ Social Economic Justice (SEJ).
Despite having these interactions, the residents noted that there was usually no feedback given to them on the interactions and discussions.
However, the Community acknowledged a few benefits from the mine such as revenue paid to the Council in form of property rates.
And unlike Maamba township, residents of Siankodobbo community indicated very little interaction with MCL and this translated into deteriorating relationship between the two parties.
There is also very little to count as benefits from the mining company and the residents cited growing fears following the pending displacement by mining company.