TORs | Términos de Referencía

Terms of Reference (English) | Términos de Referencía (Español)

Mission Scope and Background

International non-governmental organizations (NGOs) have reported that the human rights of Ms. Maxima Acuña de Chaupe in Peru are at risk because of a land dispute between her and Minera Yanacocha S.R.L, of which Newmont Mining holds a 51% interest. NGOs have expressed concern that the risks to Ms. Acuña de Chaupe’s rights are connected to the behavior of the mining company. Linked to this, questions have been raised about Newmont’s adherence to international human rights standards. In particular, it has been alleged that Yanacocha’s relationship with Peruvian security forces was inconsistent with the Voluntary Principles on Security and Human Rights, which led to threats, intimidation, and possible eviction of Ms. Acuña de Chaupe from her home. The commitment of Newmont to its stated human rights principles has been questioned.

As a result of these concerns, Newmont requested RESOLVE, an independent nonprofit organization dedicated to multi-stakeholder consensus building, to provide a concept on a fully independent fact finding mission. Once the concept was agreed, Newmont provided financing to RESOLVE for the mission. RESOLVE President, Stephen D’Esposito appointed former Canadian Ambassador Tim Martin to lead the mission.  The RESOLVE President played an advisory role to Mission Team Leader Tim Martin during the design phase, in particular to ensure appropriate contractual terms and conditions.  He also made suggestions to Tim Martin as to potential project participants and the appointment of an independent advisory group. The President of RESOLVE has no ongoing role in the mission, unless specifically requested by Mr. Martin.

The Yanacocha Independent Fact Finding Mission will be undertaken by a multi-stakeholder team composed of members with integrity and credibility. It will seek to establish the central facts of the situation described above, place them in context and provide an independent examination of Newmont’s adherence with the Voluntary Principles on Security and Human Rights in the situation concerning Ms. Acuña de Chaupe.

In particular, the Mission will seek to provide answers to the following key questions:

1.  Has Yanacocha’s conduct conformed to the Voluntary Principles for Human Rights and Security?

2. What are the facts relevant to the complaints that human rights have been violated? Do NGOs and Newmont have access to all of the relevant information with regard to the Chaupe situation?

3. What was the process of land acquisition by Yanacocha? Was it appropriate, reasonable and in conformance with applicable international standards?

4. Are there areas where Yanacocha deviated from Newmont policy requirements and international standards?

Mission Guiding Principles

The conduct of the YIFFM is completely independent from the commercial interests of Newmont and its subsidiary Minera Yanacocha. It’s conduct will be on the basis that obligations concerning human rights and international standards cannot be subordinate to the commercial interests of Newmont, or its subsidiary Minera Yanacocha. It will not address the future of the Conga project.

Independence and stakeholder engagement are fundamental principles of the RESOLVE approach. The fact-finding process is independent from the board and management of RESOLVE.

The mission is designed and implemented on a set of principles that include complete independence once the project is underway, transparency with regard to operations, and confidentiality when requested by stakeholders. Where human rights violations are alleged, particular priority is placed on ensuring affected parties are informed of the work of the mission and will have the opportunity to provide information directly to the mission. In all stages of the mission, active transparency to engaged and interested stakeholders is maintained.

Work Program and Output


The objective of this assignment is to participate in the conduct of the fact finding mission, the assessment of the findings in the context of international human rights standards (specifically, the Voluntary Principles on Security and Human Rights, the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights, and the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development Guidelines), and the drafting of a report on the conclusions and recommendations.

Team Members

In preliminary consultations on the planning and conduct of the Yanacocha Independent Fact Finding Mission, stakeholders and experts were asked to suggest candidate team members. Team leader Tim Martin identified the best suited candidates, reviewed the requirements of the work in the context of their qualifications, consulted further and made a final selection.

The mission team is composed of:

Tim Martin, Team Leader
Myriam Mendez-Montalvo, Team Member
Miguel Cervantes Rodríguez, Team Member
Dana Goodson, Policy Advisor

Commitments and Competencies

Team members commit to conducting their work in a manner that is at all times consistent with the integrity and credibility of the mission. This includes:

  • professional and ethical conduct at all times
  • the highest levels transparency, in the context of respect for confidentiality where that is requested
  • intellectual honesty
  • possessing the ability to keep an open mind and be led by the evidence
  • sensitive to the role of differing perceptions and the multi-faceted nature of the truth
  • trustworthy and possessing the ability to gain the confidence of interlocutors
  • not subject to any potential conflicts of interest in the anticipated role (e.g., being a current or previous employee of Newmont/Yanacocha or a close personal relationship to the Chaupe family)

Together, the team will employ the following competencies to the conduct of the mission:

  • knowledge of international human rights standards and the Voluntary Principles on Security and Human Rights in particular
  • knowledge of the mining sector, and preferably its operations in Latin America
  • excellent communication and writing skills
  • ability to work in multi-stakeholder team and make decisions by consensus

Team Member Tasks

As part of the mission team, members shall:

  • Review selected documents and briefing materials with respect to the land dispute between Yanacocha and the Chaupe family.
  • review and comment on the Mission’s risk assessment and mitigation plan
  • participate in the fact finding mission, which is expected to include:work with the mission team to assess the findings and develop consensus recommendations. [The report will note where consensus was not possible.]
    • review of documents (i.e., legal documents, internal company communications, government reports, NGO publications, and media reports)
    • conducting interviews
    • site visits in Peru
    • consultation with additional external experts as needed
  • contribute to the drafting of the final report
  • assist in responding to the comments of the advisory group and making appropriate revisions to the final report
  • Participate in communications activities to present the results to affected parties and external stakeholders.

Consulted with members of the Advisory Group. Dated September 1, 2015

Comments are closed.