Dar es Salaam. Good morning! The Chanzo is here with a rundown of major news stories reported in Tanzania on Tuesday, December 13, 2022.
London gold market authority sued for certifying gold from Barrick’s mine
UK lawyers acting on behalf of Tanzanian human rights victims on Tuesday announced they were suing the London Bullion Market Association (LBMA) for wrongfully certifying gold from Barrick’s “deadly” North Mara gold mine as being “responsibly sourced.”
According to a statement released yesterday by RAID, a UK-based watchdog, the legal claim has been issued by family members of two young men shot and killed by security forces at the mine in 2019.
“The ground-breaking legal case, filed by law firm Leigh Day, thrusts into the spotlight industry certification schemes which claim to maintain environmental and human rights standards,” RAID’s executive director Anneke Van Woudenberg said in a statement.
“Such schemes have been multiplying as businesses seek to promote their environmental, social and governance (ESG) credentials, often with little public oversight,” she added.
The LBMA’s gold certification scheme is considered influential as the LBMA oversees the vast $275-billion-a-week London market. It says it has appropriate checks in place to halt tainted gold from entering this market.
The legal action issued at the High Court is the first time in the UK that human rights claimants have sued an industry certification body for an alleged breach of a duty of care owed to them, according to RAID which is not the party to the legal proceedings.
In this case, the claimants allege that the LBMA’s failure to follow its own rules to stop the trade in tainted gold caused their devastating loss.
Although not the party to the legal proceedings, Van Woudenbergbut said in a statement that the organisation “fully supports the Tanzanian claimants’ decision in bringing this claim for remedy.”
“We have repeatedly warned the LBMA that it is certifying tainted gold, and now bereaved Tanzanian families are taking direct action,” she added.
“This ground-breaking case should send a strong signal to business and regulatory bodies that certification schemes claiming products are ‘responsibly sourced’ cannot be empty ESG rhetoric,” Van Woudenbergbut continued.
“Investors and consumer-facing brands that rely on ESG schemes should all sit up and take notice of this critical legal challenge.”
Nickel producer Lifezone Metals to list in New York
Lifezone Metals, which plans to mine nickel in Tanzania with a low carbon footprint, will list in New York in a deal with blank-check acquisition firm GoGreen Investments, the companies said on Tuesday.
Lifezone Metals, valued by the special purpose acquisition company (SPAC) deal at around $1 billion, owns the Kabanga Nickel mine and refinery project, backed in January by global miner BHP.
According to a report by Mining.com, Indonesia currently accounts for around 40 per cent of the world’s supply of nickel, with much of it controlled by Chinese companies.
Finding alternative sources of battery metals is a priority for the United States.
The Kabanga refinery will use hydrometallurgical technology developed by Lifezone that employs water-based solutions to separate metal from waste rock more efficiently than the traditional energy-intensive smelting process of heating ore at extremely high temperatures.
“This is really providing two key solutions: a critical new source of battery metals in Kabanga, in partnership with BHP, and clean, ESG-friendly processing technology,” said Lifezone Metals CEO Chris Showalter.
Lifezone Metals, advised on this deal by RBC Capital Markets, should start trading on the New York Stock Exchange in the second quarter of 2023 under the ticker LZM, according to a report by Mining.com.
Investors have committed more than $70 million to the company through a private investment in public equity (PIPE).
“When I look at where capital has been deployed so far, there has been ample capital raised for electric vehicles, and for batteries, but very little capital raised for the supply chain, and that means clean metals,” said John Dowd, CEO of GoGreen Investments.
The refinery plan is a win for Tanzania which, like many resource-rich African countries, wants to add more value to its minerals domestically. The Tanzanian government has a 16 per cent stake in Kabanga Nickel’s Tanzania subsidiary Tembo Nickel.
Doto Biteko, Minister for Minerals, said in a statement: “We believe Tembo Nickel will be a key vehicle supporting Tanzania’s status as an emerging leader in the clean energy transition.”
Edenville Energy wins case after unfair dismissal claims
Edenville Energy PLC, a London-based thermal coal developer, focused on brownfield Rukwa coalfields in western Tanzania, has successfully defended a claim from former employees relating to unfair dismissal as a result of COVID-19.
“The judgement by the court in Tanzania found in the company’s favour and rejected the employees’ claim in its entirety,” the company said on Tuesday.
Earlier this month, Edenville said it had raised GBP400,000 through the issue of shares, to provide additional working capital and to provide sufficient funds to meet any adverse judgements as a result of legal claims.
A game plan for CCM’s future?
The ruling Chama cha Mapinduzi (CCM) appears to be in preparation for a new game plan that would ensure its sustainable future in Tanzania and if there is a defining moment for such a process then that moment is 2022.
CCM’s new game plan seems to be fighting the demons of its past, organizing for now and preparing for a challenging future.
The party seems to be cognizant of this fact, telling from its just-concluded intra-party elections and its two-day party congress in the capital Dodoma.
Read the full article here.
Also you might be interested to read President Samia’s closing remarks at the 10th CCM national congress you can read it here.
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