Statement by Leigh Day in relation to the settlement of the human rights claims against Gemfields Ltd
Leigh Day represents 273 Mozambicans who allege that they, or their relatives, were the victims of serious human rights abuses at or around Montepuez Ruby Mining Limitada's (MRM's) mine in northern Mozambique (a joint venture in which Gemfields is the majority stakeholder).
Posted on 29 January 2019
Leigh Day represents 273 Mozambicans who allege that they, or their relatives, were the victims of serious human rights abuses at or around Montepuez Ruby Mining Limitada’s (MRM’s) mine in northern Mozambique (a joint venture in which Gemfields is the majority stakeholder).
Gemfields denies liability for these allegations. However, it recognises that, in the past, instances of violence have occurred on the MRM licence area.
Leigh Day acknowledges that Gemfields has taken the claimants’ allegations seriously and has been proactive and constructive in addressing the wider issues raised by local communities through this case. Gemfields has agreed to a settlement of these claims, which includes a sum which will be distributed to the claimants and the establishment of further community projects to improve the long term agricultural productivity and livelihoods of residents of Ntoro/Namucho.
Importantly, after consultation with Leigh Day, Gemfields has also agreed to establish an independent Operational Grievance Mechanism to ensure that any individual who wishes to raise a grievance in relation to MRM’s operations is able to obtain appropriate remedy promptly. The implementation of the Grievance Mechanism will be overseen by international experts.
Daniel Leader, partner at Leigh Day, commented:
“The settlement announced today provides significant redress to our clients and importantly puts in place a credible and independent mechanism for providing remedy to those we have been unable to represent. These incidents should never have happened. However, we commend Gemfields for engaging constructively to resolve this case promptly and for putting in place an independent grievance mechanism.”
Leigh Day is a specialist law firm which vigorously pursues the rights of the individual against corporations and government. We have successfully represented thousands of people from across the globe whose human rights have been violated and whose land, health and livelihoods have been impacted by the operations of multinationals. We have secured many successful rulings in the Supreme Court and Court of Appeal which have transformed English law. These rulings have increased legal accountability of corporations and government and strengthened the rule of law for the benefit of the disadvantaged and impoverished.