With less than 8 weeks before the 2011 Kimberley Process Certification Scheme (KPCS) Plenary scheduled for Kinshasa, members of the KP civil society who include Partnership Africa Canada (PAC) and Global Witness have notified the KP Chairperson, Mr Mathius Yamba that they will not participate at the meeting.
They have also threatened to permanently withdraw from KP over allegations that the grouping has failed to deal with the Marange diamonds.
Part of the letter written to the Chair by the civil society reads, â€œWe remain particularly concerned that this Plenary will likely end all meaningful oversight of Marange, despite ongoing and credible concerns about its compliance and cooperation with the KP in meeting minimum standards.â€
Zimbabwe Mining Development Corporation (ZMDC) Chairperson, Mr Godwills Masimirembwa described the move by the civil society as a ploy to cause confusion within the KP and a confirmation of failure of their attempt to mislead the world that there are human rights abuses in Marange.
“They are distructive societies, societies that won’t participate in an engagement that works against the interests of their masters, so its not surprising that they don’t want to participate in the intercetionary, because it will prove a point that there are no human rights violations in Zimbabwe,” said Mr. Masimirembwa.
Affirmative Action Group (AAG) President, Mr Supa Mandiwanzira described the stance by the civil society as misplaced and meant to achieve the NGOs goal of tarnishing the Marange diamonds despite the endorsement of the gems by majority of the participants.
“They have now run out of lies and other negative staff they used to create about Zimbabwe. The world now knows the truth that there are no blood diamonds coming out of Zimbabwe,” Mr. Mandiwanzira said.
Attempts by the civil society to have Marange diamonds banned through allegations of human rights abuses and torture camps have dismally failed in the past as there is no evidence to support the baseless claims.
Observers believe the decision to boycott is yet another strategy by the civil society to cause confusion and block the unconditional trade of the Marange gems.