Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Supreme Court Judges drilled on EITI procedures

Judges from the Audit Bench of the Supreme Court in Cameroon have been acquainting themselves with the procedures and principles of the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative, EITI.
The EITI aims at ensuring transparency in payment from oil and mineral resources for the benefit of local communities.
Despite its many extractive and mining industries, Cameroon is yet to be granted the compliant country status of the initiative. This situation has been blamed on the inadequacies in figures presented by stakeholders and discrepancies in the country’s reconciliation reports to the EITI Board.
The judges are acquainting themselves with procedures in the payments made by extractive industries in Cameroon
The judges will be expected to examine the accounts of Cameroon and report to the EITI Board.
The Secretary of State in the Ministry of Mines Industries and Technological Development, Fuh Calistus Gentry took the judges  memory lane and presented the various steps that the government has been taking towards inculcating good governance in the extractive industries through its adherence to the EITI process.
Through presentations and exposés, the judges of the Audit Bench of the Supreme Court were edified on the level at which Cameroon is vis-à-vis becoming compliant country of the EITI process.
The executive president of EITI from the Republic of Congo, Florent Michel Okoko whose country was admitted by the Board of Directors of the EITI as compliant country status of the initiative told this reporter he has come to share his country’s experience with Cameroon.
Cameroon adhered to the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative on the 17th of March 2005 and was granted a candidate country status in November 2007.
Though a “candidate close to compliant”, Cameroon is still faced with many challenges of being admitted by the EITI Board.
2009 and 2010 EITI Report launched
The training workshop for judges of the Audit bench of the Supreme Court was followed by the launching of the 2009 and 2010 conciliation report on extractive industries in Cameroon.
Speaking during the launch at the Yaounde Hilton on April 5, 2013, Alamine Ousmane Mey, Cameroon Minister of Finance and president of EITI Cameroon said Cameroon is resolutely involved in becoming a compliant country of the EITI by August this year.
After her 3rd reconciliation report (2006-2008) failed to convince the EITI Board, Cameroon in 2012 hired a conciliator is determined to becoming compliant member country this year.
Regional sensitizations workshops will be organized in the days ahead to let all Cameroonians better understand the EITI procedures.
By Ndi Eugene Ndi

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