Results and Lessons Learned from the KP Independent Monitoring

The project, Independent Surveillance of the Kimberley Process, SIPROKIM, has ended. A workshop to officially close the project was organised on the 8th of December 2021 by RELUFA.  The workshop brought together stakeholders in the mining sector and attended by competent sectoral administrative authorities, representatives of diplomatic and consular missions, development partners, local and national civil society organisations, and the media, with the objective to present the results of the independent monitoring of the Kimberley Process, share experiences and lessons learned during the implementation of the project and recommendations. The SIPROKIM project was financed by the European Union under the Active Citizenship Strengthening Programme, PROCIVIS.

In his opening remarks, the Coordinator of RELUFA, Jaff Napoleon Bamenjo, said for a very long time, diamond production and trade in Cameroon was strictly informal, dominated mostly by the artisanal sector. Today almost 99.8 % of diamond trade worldwide is done within the Kimberley Process Certification Scheme which started in 2003 with the objective to stop the circulation of conflict diamonds. Jaff Bamenjo, said on August 4th, 2012, Cameroon was admitted as participatory country in the Kimberley Process certification scheme and RELUFA was invited to be part of the committee charged with implementing the Kimberley Process in Cameroon.

Since then, RELUFA has been proactive and contributing in reflections on how appropriately Cameroon can implement the Kimberley Process and that is why they are conducting this independent oversight function. However, the coordinator of RELUFA regrets that one major challenge remains how to make artisanal diamond mining and trade follow clear traceability so that diamonds effectively exported from Cameroon are produced in Cameroon. Within the SIPROKIM project, RELUFA is examining internal controls both at the border with CAR and in artisanal mining sites.

Speaking during the event, the Programme Coordinator of PROCIVIS, Sorba Francois, said the European Union is concerned with human rights issues and the Kimberley Process is a means to look at this and put in place measures to protect the population. While thanking RELUFA for its laudable performance as far as the independent monitoring of the Kimberley Process is concerned, Sorba urged civil society actors to ensure that they have a mastery of the process.

Presenting the findings and results of the independent monitoring, the SIPROKIM project manager, Christian Brice Anangue, outlined recommendations such as, the government should raise awareness on the Kimberley Process and the importance of compliance, organise mobile registration caravans, support the collective institutionalisation of artisanal miners including those of other nationalities, facilitate access to mining inputs for artisanal miners and set up a mechanism that can contribute to improving the living conditions of the artisanal miners.

The workshop also featured the projection of a documentary film on the monitoring of the Kimberley Process in the East and Adamawa regions. Exchanges that followed focused on the Kimberley Process as a whole and the independent monitoring.

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