ENFR

Training workshop on mining governance for D-AGRI officers of the 33rd Military Region

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On 28 to 29 September a training for the officers of D-AGRI of the 33rd Military Region of the FARDC has been held at hotel Delicia in Bukavu. These activities were being undertaken within the context of the sensitization project for the demilitarization of mining sites. D-AGRI is the unit on « agricultural and natural ressources management at the 33rd Military Region». An innovation following the lift of the ban on artisanal mining in the Eastern part of the country. Its role is to supervise FARDC servicemen in peace time and to maximize the state’s income by supporting taxation departments and protecting mining sites from illicit and illegal mining by armed individuals.

The workshop opening session was the reading of the agenda by the moderator followed by the national anthem then the word of the commander of 33rd military region. Day 1 was marked by works focusing on realities that D-AGR military servicemen encounter in the mining sites regarding militaries’ involvement and according to them, how miltary servicemen are involved in illicit mining. Then the problems of miltary presence in mining sites, such as human rights abuses, illegal taxing, neglecting their mission of assuring civilian’s security, links between the conflict, minerals and the army were approached. Then followed the presentation and discussions on Dodd-Frank Law / the European conflict mineral legislation, the regional certification mechanism of the ICGLR and is implementation in the DRC. The last session of day 1 was the presentation and discussion on military legislation with respect to mining sites.

As regards day 2, activities started with the presentation and discussion on the military legislation with respect to mining sites and penalties (provisions of the mining law and military code, the role of military justice). Then followed the description of D-AGRI including the following points:
– History, the organizational chart, its integration into the 33rd Military Region
– The main tasks of D-AGRI
– The task concerning the demilitarization (specific role of D-AGRI)
– Examples of demilitarization by D-AGRI

Working groups focused on the demilitarization practices including issues faced in the demilitarization, strategies and best practices, the mechanisms for improving actions for results, support from military hierarchy when facing influence cases on the ground.
Then the description of the role of Mining Police (background and organization, roles, collaboration with the 33ième région) was held by its Chief. Finally discussions on the outlook of the project followed.

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