Ghana VPs Update: April-June 2016

cover-201011607-ghanavpsupdateThis briefing of the Second Quarter of 2016 (Q2) provides updates on the local-level activities for our program. Visiting the pilot regions where we previously conducted trainings, this quarter saw the set up of four local dialogue platforms, bringing together communities, CSOs, local government, oil/gas and mining companies, media, and public security.

FFP and WANEP-Ghana delivered local dialogues to discuss VPs-related issues in mining, and oil/gas affected communities. A total of 73 participants took part across the four regions including the Minerals Commission, the Ghana Police Service, Ghana Navy, the Commission on Human Rights and Administrative Justice (CHRAJ), traditional leadership, companies, local media (Ghana News Agency), the District/Metropolitan Assembly, Ghana National Petroleum Commission, private security providers, and religious bodies.

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Ghana VPs Update: January-March 2016

cover-201011604-ghanavpsupdateThe first local dialogue was held on February 22 in Bolgatanga, Upper East region. The dialogue, led by WANEP-Ghana, was attended by stakeholders including the Ghana Police Service, the Commission on Human Rights and Administrative Justice (CHRAJ), Traditional leadership, the Shanxii Mining Company, small scale mining groups, the Talensi and Nabdam District Assemblies, the local media (Ghana News Agency) and the Lands Commission.

As a follow-on from the training conducted in December 2015, the dialogue focused on sensitizing the participants to the need to adopt and use Alternative Dispute Resolu-tion (ADR) mechanisms to address threats to security and peace in extractives-affected communities. A group of volunteers amongst the dialogue participants agreed to form a grievance response committee that shall participate in monitoring security and human rights-related threats arising from the mining operations in their area. The volunteer group will receive information on risks from community monitors who will be identified by WANEP-Ghana, and facilitate responses to those risks The group consists of representatives from the mining company, CSO, local government assembly, traditional leadership, community, and small scale mining organization. A follow-up dialogue will be staged next quarter.

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Ghana VPs Update: October-December 2015

cover-201011601-ghanavpsupdateIn December 2015, FFP and WANEP-Ghana delivered local training workshops in Bolgatanga, Upper East Region, and Takoradi, Western Region. Both trainings focused on sensitizing the VPs initiative and guidelines, as well as introducing ways to mitigate conflict through available grievance mechanisms, and promoting peacebuilding and conflict early warning in communities. Twelve participants were attended each of the full day courses co-presented by WANEP-Ghana and FFP. In Bolgatanga, the training session marked the first time a Chinese mining company had attended a VPs related event in Ghana alongside the Galamsey community men and women who live near their goldmine operations.

Also in attendance were local media, government representatives and CSOs. The presentations were given in both English and the local dialect Grune. In Takoradi, participants included local government, media, and representatives from a number of CSO advocacy groups active in the region, including members of the Coastal Platform for Peace Building (COPP) and Friends of the Nation. Further, there were representatives from VPs member company Tullow Oil and, for the first time, Naval police involved in patrolling the fishing waters around the offshore oil operations. The diverse participant mixes provided not only a shared learning environment on the VPs which was a new concept for many, but also a valuable exchange of experiences, grievances and ideas.

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Ghana VPs: Overview

cover-201011511-ghanavpsoverviewThe central program goal is to foster a more permissive and accepting environment for VPs implementation projects in Ghana. To achieve this goal, the project has four main objectives: 1. Establish sustained multi-stakeholder dialogue with respect to security and human rights; 2. Build capacity of local civil society groups; 3. Increase public education and understanding of human rights, security, corruption, gender, and violence issues; and 4. Contribute to the overall learning and development of best practice in creating an inclusive, multi-stakeholder VPs in-country process.

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