On 27th August, 2016, the “No to ProSAVANA” Campaign, along with other 83 organizations from across the globe, published the “joint Announcement and questions of the Civil Society of Mozambique, Brazil and Japan about ProSAVANA with regard to the recently leaked Government Documents.”
The above-mentioned announcement stresses the facts revealed by the leaked documents and the way this triangular program has been planning and carrying out actions against the organizations questioning the program through “ProSAVANA’s Communication Strategy” established by the JICA’s fund (Japan International Cooperation Agency) . The aforementioned documents equally show the involved governments’ strategy, put in place by JICA’s consultants with the aim of dividing the Mozambican civil society, marginalizing and excluding the organizations members of the “No to ProSAVANA Campaign” since the process of creation of a “dialogue” mechanism in the scope of redesigning ProSAVANA’s Master Plan (MP), even considering that the “Campaign” was the only entity that prepared and published a critical review to the zero version of the MP.
Given the irregularity, secrecy, illegitimacy and obscurantism that characterized the establishment of the “dialogue mechanism”, the “Campaign” published two press releases denouncing these aspects. Now, with the leaked documents of JICA – that has financed this process in full – the attempt of co-optation and division of the Mozambican civil society hs become evident. The minutes of the meeting held at JICA’s office right after the creation of the “mechanism”, where were presents, among others, the Mechanism coordinator (also coordinator of the Mozambican NGO, SOLIDARITY MOZAMBIQUE and Vice President of the Provincial Platform of the Civil Society of Nampula: PPOSC-N) and the employee of WWF, coordinator of Platforms Alliances and the members of ProSAVANA, reveals that the actors had discussed how to “indirectly” channel funds to the mechanism, and the coordinator of the mechanism mentioned that:
“…there has been work regarding Maputo and the provinces concerning the awareness of the NGOs and other stakeholders that were supporting the “No ProSAVANA Campaign” to join the vision and objectives of the Mechanism”.
All these actions carried out directly or indirectly by the governments in an obscure way, clearly violate the human rights guaranteed through the Universal Declaration of the Human Rights and other international agreements, the Constitution of the Republic of Mozambique and the Guidelines of the Social Environmental Considerations and Compliance of JICA. Forcing ProSAVANA’s implementation will be a violation of the communities’ right to free, prior and informed consent.
Even with all these irregularities already reported, the governments of Mozambique, Brazil and Japan proceed with the process of “Redesigning” the Master Plan, as can be verified in the Press Release of the Mechanism of Coordination of the Civil Society for the Development of the Nacala Corridor (MCSC-CN) published on 28.10.2016, that contains problematic information on how the revision process of the Master Plan and public consultation will be conducted.
From the announcement of public Consulting tender to the revision of ProSAVANA’s Master Plan and the Press Release of the Mechanism of Coordination of the Civil Society for the Development of the Nacala Corridor (MCSC-CN) it is important to mention that:
1. The governments of Mozambique and, Brazil and Japan have agreed on implementing the ProSAVANA Program, which is not coherent with the fact that the Master Plan has not been approved, therefore it cannot be implemented, as well as the fact that an entity has been hired to revise the same. Considering that the concerned governments have already agreed on implementing ProSAVANA, there are no plausible foundations for the revision of the Master Plan that would result in the approval or no approval of the same.
2. The coordination of the Master Plan revision process was attributed to Solidarity Mozambique, in a process that, although it has resulted from a tender made public, nothing else is known about the selection mechanisms. For purposes of the tender in question, Solidarity Mozambique does not meet the necessary requirements, let us observe:
a. It is not impartial in the extent where it is an integral part of MCSC-CN;
b. It is one of the organizations that has most defended publically and in other circumstances the ProSAVANA Program; and
c. It is a non-profit association where the consulting services do not fit in its scope.
Consequently, Solidarity Mozambique’s selection in the context of the public tender “Consulting for revision of ProSAVANA’s Master Plan” shows itself irregular, and must be declared void and with no effect.
3. Although, by purely academic hypothesis, the selection process of Solidarity Mozambique had been regular, the “puppet” nature of the Master Plan redesign proposal as resulting from the Press Release of the abovementioned MCSC-CN, must be considered.
4. Apart from the fact that once more the aforementioned contract is entered into with JICA that has been having a crucial role in the financing of activities that aim on, as has already been shown, dividing the Mozambican civil society and on raising conflict among the same, through the co-optation of the same with financing; and that although the terms of reference have already been requested, values involved and selection process of this tender for Japan, these have not been made available;
5. Mapping of groups of interest and of the community based organizations that will guide the public consultation’s process in the Area of the Nacala Corridor must be made public, as well as the methodology used in the preparation of the same. MCSC-CN has been acting as an arm of the ProSAVANA Program itself. In their statements and approaches, it is clear that they support the program in the way it currently appears through the last public version of the Master Plan, for as far as we know there is no other version. This apparent agreement with the ProSAVANA Program and the constant support of a program that in many circumstances has been rejected by the main affected, peasants along the Nacala Corridor, is quite disturbing and blatantly contradicts the claims that it is an inclusive and participatory process.
6. The Press Release also refers to a new initiative that aimed on changing the “No ProSAVANA” scenery, however, to what it is known there has not been any structural change in the Program’s model, nor in the way it has been imposed to the local communities and society in general.
7. The time-line contained in the Press Release is inadequate, discriminatory and does not allow broad and inclusive stakeholder participation. Despite the long period MCSC-CN is supposedly working “to improve communication and coordination between CSOs, MASA, and their international partners to develop in an inclusive and participatory way a Nacala Corridor Agriculture Development Master Plan …” the situation on the ground, the arrogance and oppressiveness with which the ProSAVANA Program is treated remains. Apart from the fact that there is not yet any version of ProSAVANA that is a redesign of Mozambicans for Mozambicans, and the aforementioned simplified document that is supposed to be discussed in the consultations scheduled to begin on the 23rd of November is not public.
We demand that all documentation of this Program and process is made public, copies of all documents be distributed to the communities along the Nacala Corridor and to all interested, within an acceptable time-frame for previous analysis.
We demand that JICA voids the contract with Solidarity Mozambique due to the clear irregularities mentioned, and that the Governments of Mozambique, Japan and Brazil respect the human rights of Nacala Corridor communities secured by the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the Constitution of the Republic of Mozambique and the Guidelines of the Environmental Social Considerations and Compliance of JICA itself.
There will be no community consultations nor regional meetings nor conferences whatsoever based on simplified documents, we will not legitimize an obscure process filled with illegalities, where the aim is masked in simple intentions and nothing defined as serious and binding commitments.
No to ProSAVANA!!!
Mozambique, 8th of November, 2016
ADECRU – Academic Association for the Development of Rural Communities, Mozambique
Woman Forum, Mozambique
Justiça Ambiental – JA! – Amigos da Terra, Mozambique
Human Rights League, Mozambique
National Farmers Union, Mozambique
Archdiocesan Commission for Justice and Peace of Nampula, Mozambique
Diocesan Commission for Justice and Peace of Nacala, Moçambique
Women World March, International
Africa Japan Forum (AJF), Japão
No! to landgrab, Japão
APLA/Alternative People’s Linkage in Asia
Pastoral Comission of Land – CPT
FASE – Solidarity and Education, Brazil
Japan Family Farmers Movement, Japão
Japan International Volunteer Center, Japão
Concerned Citizens Group with the Development of Mozambican-Japan, Japão
Concerned Citizens Group with TPP, Japão
Sapporo Freedom School ‘YU’, Japão
Hokkaido NGO Network Council, japão
NGO No War Network Hokkaido volunteers, Japão
Global Justice, Brazil
La Via Campesina, Japão
Peasant Women Movement – MMC, Brasil
ODA Reform Network, Japão
Black Women’s Network for Safety and Nutrition, Brazil
TPP Citizen Coalition, Japão
NATIONAL CONFEDERATION OF MEN AND WOMEN WORKERS IN FAMILY FARMING IN BRAZIL.- CONTRAF-BRAZIL
Note: Notícias newspaper in Maputo refused to publish the above-mentioned press release, even as an announcement and even upon payment, since they claimed it went against their editorial line . They also refused to give this information in written, since they said they did not need to justify the refusal.