News / 10 February 2015

Press release Both ENDS and SOMO: construction of Barro Blanco dam finally suspended

Following years of community protest the construction of the Barro Blanco dam in Panama is finally suspended. This was publicly announced by Panama’s Environmental Agency ANAM yesterday. The suspension of the project has been a request of the Ngöbe community, represented by the Movimiento 10 de Abril (M-10), for years. The dam is projected to flood homes, schools, and religious, archaeological, and cultural sites in the indigenous traditional territory, and convert the Tabasará River from a running river to a stagnant lake ecosystem. The suspension of the project is just in time, as the dam’s construction is near to completion,


Better late than never

The M-10 is satisfied that steps are finally taken to address their concerns. “We have been intimidated and some of our members were even sued in the court, but we have always persisted in claiming our right to be consulted on projects in our territory” said Manolo Miranda, representing the M-10.  Both ENDS is pleased with this decisio, as we have been closely involved in this case for years. We support M10 in several ways, and we have been showing  one of the major investors in the project, the Dutch development bank FMO, its responsibilities. This bank must adhere to its own, but also to international social and environmental regulations, and has not done so in this case. Together with the Dutch organization SOMO we therefore M10 in 2014 helped to file a complaint with the FMO. The handling of this complaint will certainly be influenced by current trends.


Read the full press release


More information:

7 May 2014: Indigenous people file complaint against FMO for funding of Barro Blanco dam, Panama

3 March 2014: Parliamentary questions about construction Barro Blanco dam in Panama

18 Feb. 2014:  Situation tense for indigenous Ngäbe people near Barro Blanco dam

14 Feb. 2014:  Filing a complaint with the FMO?

19 June 2013:  Will UN-rapporteur Anaya investigate Barro Blanco dam in Panama?


Facebook page M-10

Website 'Human Rights and Grievance Mechanisms'


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