THE PRESIDENCY: REPUBLIC OF SOUTH AFRICA
Private Bag X1000, Pretoria, 0001
NATIONAL ASSEMBLYQUESTION FOR WRITTEN REPLY
QUESTION NO. 59
DATE PUBLISHED: 10 February 2011
DATE DUE: 24 February 2011
59. The Leader of the Opposition (DA) to ask the President of the Republic:
(1) Whether he has been informed of reports that diamonds mined at the (a) Marange and (b) Chiadzwa diamond fields in Zimbabwe are being sold outside of the Kimberley Process to fund the operations of Zimbabwe's ruling Zanu-PF party; if not, what is the position in this regard; if so, what is the Government's position in this regard;
(2) whether the Government has taken an official position on human rights abuses that took place at these diamond fields; if not, why not; if so, what are the relevant details? NW69E
(1) Our information is that the said sale of both Marange and Chiadzwa diamonds was effected, following an agreement within Kimberly Process Certification System, that the requisite level of compliance had been attained for specific mines in the Marange and Chiadzwa area, subject to such sales taking place under the supervision of an independent monitor appointed within the Kimberly Process.
Our position therefore is that Zimbabwe has fulfilled the known and stated Kimberly Process requirements and that sales of diamonds takes place within that context.
(2) The Government of South Africa is aware of the allegations of human rights abuses that were leveled against the Zimbabwean Government and that such abuses took place at these diamond fields. The implication of these allegations being that Zimbabwe was non compliant with Kimberly Process as a result.
In our capacity as the Chairperson of the Association of African Diamond Producing Countries (ADPA), South Africa also led a delegation of members of the association and visited these mines and the surrounding communities to verify for itself the level of compliance. During these visits, we were impressed as ADPA at the level of compliance with the Kimberly Process Certification System process and soon after these monitoring visits, Kimberly Process approved exports of diamonds in Zimbabwe, took place under the supervision of a Kimberly Process monitor. Such sales took place via auction in August and November 2010, respectively.
Issued by Parliament, August 29 2011