Talks of Belkol is very strong in the media, on the ground I interviewed several people. Some says it can go ahead but it doesn’t mean that it is to do with reopening the Panguna mine. Others says we don’t want it, and it never happen with a Company for the Indigenous people of the Island.
When I asked the Meekamui Military Government they sent me the statement below.The Government Government of Unity with President Philip Miriori told me that they opposed the Belkol and President Philip Miriori will put out a statement with in two days time.
Belkol is a cultural ceremony and only for Bougainvilleans to participate in it. BCL is a foreign company and has no culture to value what we value on our people, land and resources. They were a party to the atrocities and the blatant abuse of human rights violations committed by the PNG Security Forces by supplying accommodation, food, vehicles, fuels, money and logistics to the PNGDF. BCL has to pay compensation to the loss of 20, 000 lives, properties and damage to the environment. The demand made by the late President Francis Ona for BCL to pay 10 billion Kina for compensation is still outstanding.
According to the custom of the people of Bougainville the people of Guava Village and Panguna District are the ones who can be involve in the BELKOL ceremony to say sorry to other Bougainvilleans who lost their lives supporting the cause of the late Francis Ona.
BCL has no place in the custom of Bougainvilleans and we do not welcome them in Bougainville for making a mockery out of BELKOL our good custom that regulate peace and unity among our people. I demand those Bougainvilleans involve in the BELKOL exercise to stay out of it and disqualify themselves for making a FOOL out of themselves for the money they can solicit from BCL.at the expense of degrading our good custom the BELKOL.
Read this earlier linked post: Rio Tinto’s inhumanity has no precedent on Bougainville – Belkol does not apply