News & Visuals

Spring Meetings 2015 : Indigenous Peoples Session

On Friday, April 17, 2015, in the context of the Civil Society Forum at the Spring Meetings, the Inspection Panel and the Forest Peoples Programme hosted an event titled “Accountability Mechanisms and Indigenous Peoples Rights: Experiences from the Field”. The session was chaired by Antonio Henrique Pinheiro Silveira (Executive Director for Brazil at the World Bank). The Panel speakers included Gonzalo Castro de la Mata (Chairman of the Inspection Panel), Victoria Tauli-Corpuz (UN Special Rapporteur on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples), Helen Tugendhat (Policy Advisor at the Forest Peoples Programme), and Reidar Kvam (Senior Manager at the Environment, Social and Governance Department at IFC). The premise of this session was the recognition that accountability mechanisms such as the Inspection Panel are playing an increasingly important role in helping Indigenous Peoples protect their identities, cultures, livelihoods and rights. The objective of this session was, therefore, to bring together experts and practitioners from different organizations and backgrounds to discuss experiences and lessons emerging from recent Panel and other cases involving indigenous communities.

The presentations by Gonzalo and Helen discussed experiences from Inspection Panel cases in Kenya, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Ethiopia and Paraguay.Reidar presented several IFC case examples to give a private sector perspective on accountability mechanisms and Indigenous People’s rights, reflecting on rights-based approaches to development and the IFC’s performance standards.Victoria focused her presentation on her role as the UN Special Rapporteur and her mandate to look into Indigenous Peoples’ access to justice and remedy. She discussed a case in Paraguay and her experience with the Inter-American Court of Human Rights to highlight the challenges of Indigenous Peoples to get redress in situations of injustice. During the Q&A session, the speakers discussed training and monitoring, and how the different organizations try to level the playing field and assist Indigenous Peoples to ensure their access to accountability mechanisms. For more information you can viewthe full taped session here.