Zimbabwe: Outrage as diamond rights groups accused of bribery

source: SW Radio Africa
By Alex Bell
28 June 2010

There has been a shocked and outraged reaction to claims by Mines Minister Obert Mpofu that two leading international diamond rights groups had tried to bribe him, by offering their support in exchange for diamond profits.

The groups Global Witness and Partnership Africa Canada (PAC) on Monday moved to reject the allegations that they offered to support Zimbabwe’s bid to resume diamond exports in exchange for a 1% cut of the profits. The allegation surfaced at the end of the week-long meeting of the Kimberley Process (KP) diamond certification scheme, where Zimbabwe’s compliance with the scheme’s minimum requirements was hotly debated.

“We reject outright this malicious and unsubstantiated allegation. At no point did any of the non-governmental organisations at the meeting make any kind of offer of conditional support for exports. The violence that continues to plague Zimbabwe’s Chiadzwa diamond fields – and the government’s blatant disregard for KP rules – indisputably signify that no exports should take [continue reading]

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