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Emerging trends in West Africa’s natural resources sector

R Getty, V Maharaj, J Joughin
Saturday, February 1, 2020
First presented: 
MACIG 2020
Published paper
Countries in West Africa generally have primary environmental and mining legislation that reflects modern sustainable development paradigms. Ghana has relatively well-developed subsidiary legislation to support practical implementation of the law by the mining sector, but in most other countries this is still being developed. The effectiveness of enforcement agencies is variable. Ghana is a progressive example; however, resource and capacity constraints are common among these institutions in many countries. Pressure to comply with legal obligations and incorporate good international industry practice can be expected to increase in West Africa, as is the case in other parts of the world.

Feature Author

Rebecca Getty

Rebecca is an environmental management professional with over 10 years’ experience in the mining industry. Her experience as an environmental advisor includes mine closure, environmental management plans and environmental approvals. She commenced her career as an exploration geologist, responsible for supervising drill programs and preparing technical and statutory reports.  She has designed, implemented and managed exploration programs for greenfields, mine definition and multi-stage projects in Australia and Canada. Rebecca’s experience in technical reporting includes authoring and co-authoring of reports across scoping, pre-feasibility and feasibility study levels according to international reporting guidelines, JORC Code and NI 43-101. Rebecca has strong project management and risk assessment skills.

Senior Consultant (Environmental and Mine Closure)
BSc (Hons) Geology, MAusIMM, MAIG
SRK Perth
Vassie Maharaj


  • Development and implementation of:
    • stakeholder engagement strategies and plans
    • communication and capacity development programmes.
  • Strategic guidance and review for clients and engagement teams, on countrywide and international stakeholder engagement processes


Vassie has over 16 years’ experience in stakeholder engagement, communication, capacity development, and advisory review. Her experience spans a variety of projects including those for the mining, industrial, infrastructure and oil and gas sectors, as well as for government policy development processes, environmental permitting, and environmental awareness and capacity building programs. It also includes working:

  • Within specific in-country legislative requirements, and international standards and good international industry practice guidelines (eg. Equator Principles, IFC Performance Standards)
  • In remote locations
  • Across cultural and language boundaries, using culturally appropriate methods, innovative techniques, and capacity building to enhance meaningful participation amongst all levels of stakeholders, including the illiterate.

She works closely with client teams to develop and implement internal and external stakeholder management plans. Her skills include guiding clients throughout the project life cycle to build constructive, long-term relationships with their stakeholders based on mutual trust and credibility.

Vassie has led and advised on numerous stakeholder and government consultation processes in South Africa, DRC, Zanzibar, Mozambique, Botswana, Zambia, Yemen, and Indonesia.

Director / Partner / Principal Consultant: Stakeholder Engagement
SRK Johannesburg
Jane Joughin

Jane is a Corporate Consultant with 24 years of experience providing environmental and social management consulting services to the mining industry, in Africa and Europe.  To date, she has worked on over 35 mine ESIAs.  She also has experience undertaking ESIAs dam, road and railway developments.  Jane has undertaken compliance audits and due diligence reviews of mining projects/ operations.

Corporate Consultant (Environment)
SRK Cardiff
SRK Africa