TORONTO, June 6, 2012 /CNW/ - Jeremy Wyeth, Chief Executive Officer of
Excellon Resources (TSX: EXN), handed in his resignation to the Board
of Directors on June 4 following a confrontational shareholder meeting
on May 31 in Toronto.
The resignation comes only days after members of the communal
landowners' group, Ejido "La Sierrita", attended Excellon's
shareholders' meeting to vote against stock options for the board of
directors and demand that the company resolve community and labour
disputes at the La Platosa mine in Durango, Mexico. The resignation
also comes a week after both landowners and employees in Mexico, along
with Canadian allies, filed a complaint against Excellon under the OECD
Guidelines for Multinational Corporations with the National Contact
Point in Ottawa.
During the shareholder meeting, community representatives Daniel Pacheco
and David Espinoza insisted that the company send Canadian management
to a negotiation in early June to resolve a long-simmering land
conflict with the Ejido La Sierrita. "Your management in Mexico has
failed to respect its agreement with our community and avoided coming
to the table to resolve our legitimate concerns. We need your Canadian
management to attend negotiations in early June to ensure significant
change. Only then will we know that Excellon is taking the peaceful
resolution of these conflicts seriously," said Mr. Pacheco at the May
31 meeting. The representatives also insisted that the company engage
in negotiations of a legitimate collective bargaining agreement with
workers in the mine.
Shareholders noted the drastic difference between the community members'
account of what is happening in Mexico and the company's official
statements regarding the conflicts. "It is clear that shareholders were
not happy with the company leadership in last Thursday's meeting," said
Mark Rowlinson of the United Steelworkers (USW). According to Mr.
Rowlinson, shareholders were concerned about the recent acquisition of
land in northern Canada and the lack of of transparency on the part of
Excellon to its shareholders regarding the company's perpetuation of
both labour and land conflicts at the La Platosa mine in Mexico.
The USW and ProDESC have routinely communicated with shareholders over
the last year and warned of the lack of disclosure on community and
labour problems, which, the union alleges, is a reason for the
depressed stock price. Last week, the USW sent Excellon's major
shareholders a copy of the OECD complaint filed by various worker and
community stakeholders. The shareholders' concerns in the meeting were
evident in heated exchanges that several shareholders had with board of
directors chairman Peter Crossgrove, as well as in the narrow margin of
what was supposed to be a routine vote to ratify stock options to the
board of directors.
After a year of continued concern about the conflicts at La Platosa and
stagnant share prices, shareholders expressed that they were looking
for something new. Mr. Wyeth's departure may herald the company's
"It is our hope that these changes also indicate a willingness on the
part of the company to change tack regarding its perpetuation of both
labour and social conflicts at the La Platosa facility," said Mr.
SOURCE United Steelworkers (USW)
For further information:
Christopher Benoit, ProDESC (Project of Economic, Social and Cultural Rights)
(tel) +55-5212-2230, firstname.lastname@example.org
Jennifer Moore, Latin America Program Coordinator, MiningWatch Canada
(613) 569-3439, email@example.com
Daniel Pacheco, Ejido "La Sierrita", +52-416-876-2502
Mark Rowlinson, United Steelworkers, 416-544-5952, firstname.lastname@example.org