MAPUTO– Human rights organization Amnesty International has accused the Chinese mining company Haiyu of violating Mozambican and international lawS in its operations in the northern Mozambican province of Nampula, where it is extracting titanium minerals.
In a report enntitled, Our lives are worth nothing, released at a media conference here Wednesday, Amnesty said Haiyu was responsible for floods in the coastal village of Nagonha in 2013 when 48 houses were destroyed, leaving 290 people without a roof over their heads.
The other 1,000 or so people living in the village are also under threat, warned Amnesty researcher for southern Africa David Matsinhe.
Haiyu began its operations in 2011 and Matsinhe said that a comparison of satellite images taken between October 2010 and October 2014 showed how the Chinese company had ruined the wetlands behind the village. Haiyu’s activities filled the marshes with sand, and blocked the channels which normally drained storm waters to the sea.
When the heavy rains of early 2015 arrived, Haiyu opened a new channel in the middle of the community, and the ensuing flood destroyed homes and vegetation, swept away wild fruit trees, medicinal plants and small lakes where villagers once fished.
Amnesty believes that Haiyu’s operations violated Mozambican laws on mining, on environmental protection, and on the resettlement of people affected by mining. It has urged the Mozambican government to investigate Haiyu’s breaches of the country’s laws.
Source: NAM NEWS NETWORK