Vedanta Resources settles Zambia copper mine pollution claim

by Reuters
Wednesday, 20 January 2021 08:36 GMT

ARCHIVE PHOTO: A miner works in Nchanga mine in Cingola, Zambia, April 13, 2005. REUTERS/Salim Henry

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The claimants - more than 2,500 Zambian villagers - alleged toxic discharge from the Nchanga mine damaged land and waterways

JOHANNESBURG, Jan 19 (Reuters) - Vedanta Resources has agreed to settle all claims brought against it by Zambian villagers following alleged pollution by a copper mine run by Konkola Copper Mines Plc (KCM), Vedanta and law firm Leigh Day said on Tuesday.

The claim from the Nchanga Copper Mine, was brought by more than 2,500 Zambian villagers against KCM - Zambia's biggest private employer - and its UK-based parent company Vedanta Resources.

"Without admission of liability, Vedanta Resources Limited and Konkola Copper Mines Plc confirm that they have agreed, for the benefit of local communities, the settlement of all claims brought against them by Zambian claimants represented by English law firm Leigh Day," Vedanta said in the joint statement.

The settlement amount was not disclosed.

The Zambian claimants, including more than 600 children, alleged toxic discharge from the Nchanga mine damaged land and waterways, and were seeking damages, remediation and the cessation of the alleged pollution.

Britain's Supreme Court ruled in 2019 that the case could be brought against Vedanta in the English courts because the company owed villagers a duty of care.

(Reporting by Helen Reid in Johannesburg, Editing by Barbara Lewis)

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