12 August 2020

MRM community resettlement enters final phase

Although completion of the Montepuez Ruby Mining (MRM) Resettlement Project has been slowed down by the Covid-19 pandemic, good progress is still being made.

MRM’s concession occupies 340 square kilometres in Mozambique, within which there are five communities: Namanhumbir, Nanune, Nseue, Nthoro and Mpene. In order to fully access the rich ore deposits contained herein, the decision was taken to relocate Nthoro, with the agreement of the locals and numerous consulted stakeholders. As part of the resettlement process, Gemfields has consulted extensively with the residents of Nthoro, and, through our Resettlement Action Plan (RAP), we have followed national and international best practices to create a new village and appealing new homes. These will be unveiled as soon as final steps are completed and restrictions allow the movement of villagers into their new residences. Despite the pandemic, the project is now close to complete, with all 105 residential homes nearly finished, and now undergoing checks by a government-appointed third party, the Center for Studies and Development of Habitat (CSDH). No details have been overlooked: the site is soon to be connected to the state power provider and water supplier, roads are being perfected and the best drainage systems put in place to cope with excessive rainfall and potential flooding. Another key concern is security, so the MRM team has been in contact with the Provincial Police Command and District Administration to discuss all aspects of security on site, to ensure villagers are protected. The livelihoods of resettled families have also been safeguarded through the Livelihoods Restoration Programme (LRP), and MRM is continuing to liaise with local administrators to ensure land within the new area is ready for farming. We are excited for the day when we can announce the completion of this project!