Zimbabwe has been elected as the vice chair of the Kimberly Process Certification Scheme (KPCS) for 2022 at the last meeting held on the 12th of November in Moscow.
By Tracy Mazhura
The Kimberley Process is a multilateral trade regime established in 2003 with the goal of preventing the flow of conflict diamonds.
Briefing the media in Harare, Information minister, Monica Mutsvangwa said the country would in 2023 assume the presidency.
“The country has to immediately start the preparations to run the secretariat for 2023 and the preparation also include hosting two annual meetings for the KPCS in 2023” Mutsvangwa said.
In 2004 and 2007 when the mining industry was poor and not productive, KPCS conducted two review visits of the country but failed to complete its mission due to violence in the Marange diamond fields.
The country is also obliged to establish a skeleton secretariat which will be towards learning from other countries about the hosting and running the affairs of the organization.
The KPCS is a joint government, industry and civil society initiative to stop trade in conflict diamonds – rough diamonds used by rebel movements and other rouge groups to finance wars against legitimate government.
The organization has 49 members representing 75 countries, and covers about 99.8 percent of the global production of rough diamonds.
The credibility of the KPCS has been on a knife edge since the decision not to take action against Zimbabwe for human rights abuse in the diamond mining fields.
A report in June 2009 by the international watchdog, Human Rights Watch, accused Zimbabwean security forces of killing more than 200 miners in 2008 – an allegation denied by the late former President Robert Mugabe’s government – and recommended that Zimbabwe be suspended from the KPCS.