Sinkhole halts Porgera mine operations


Jeffrey Elapa | Post Courier | June 09,2016

UNDERGROUND mine operations at the Porgera gold mine in Enga Province has stopped after detecting a sinkhole near the mine operations, developer Barrick (Niugini) Limited confirmed yesterday.

Executive managing director Greg Walker reported that operations at the mine have been partially impacted by a sinkhole that has blocked a key drainage portal linked to the underground mining complex. As a precaution, management have temporarily halted operations in the underground mine area, and have been working with local communities to ensure the safety of employees and those who reside in the impacted area.

“Our primary and ongoing concern at this time is for the safety of our people and the community in which we live and work,” Mr Walker said.

“While there has been no immediate impact or injury to people in the area, the sinkhole has opened in an area adjacent to residences and community buildings, and we are working with the community to move people away from the immediate area, in case there is further land movement.

“The mine will be providing immediate support to people who are required to temporarily relocate as a result of the subsidence.”

Management reported that it was working to urgently investigate the land movement and identify options to remediate the sinkhole site.

“While we are able to engage in surface mining and processing in these circumstances, for safety reasons work to investigate the movement of ground can only progress slowly at this stage.

“In the coming days we will be working with the community and local authorities to help minimise any impact on local people from this land movement,” Mr Walker said.

He also noted that the company would provide further updates on the situation when any new information was available.

The company said concerns were raised by Lagaip-Porgera MP Nixon Mangape who called on mines inspectors to visit the site because the sinkhole posed threats to human lives. Mr Mangape said the sinkhole last Saturday was directly caused by the underground mine operations and was causing panic and threat to the SML landowners.



Filed under Environmental impact, Papua New Guinea

3 responses to “Sinkhole halts Porgera mine operations

  1. Thank you very mu ch for the updates.
    People who are just living by the mine should move further away from the special mine lease area permanently. We do not know why we are still living near the mine while mine operation is still in progress. If we we come back and still live there, we know that we will be affected not by sinkholes and landslides alone but by other mine related waste like acids that are emitted and floods from the underground mine. Please I personally suggested that if Barrick and the local Authority are to become partnership to consider the permanent relocation of the people out there, will safety of the people be safe. Otherwise, we know that some living homes will be sank in to the underground mine area.

    Thank you very much media People

    Lawrence Kalo
    Porgera SML Youth.

    • pana

      Lawrence, good suggestion but will not happen. Barricj does not care about human life, the only reason for their presence is your gold and money. Every porgerean should know this fact by now. The leaders if you have any have completely no idea how to help its people against thses money monsters. Like a rugby league game, when a Porgera team plays the Aust national team there is NP way the Porgera team can beat Australian. Always on the loosing side and so is same in mining. Unless you engage top wirld class lawyers like Justice Foundation are now doing under leadershio of Jonathan Paraia and Kurubu ipara , your people will continue to suffer defeat. This is a reality all over the world , mining companies making use of ignorance of local people and governments to make money.

  2. Pingback: Sinkhole halts Porgera mine operations – Jakeman's 10-20

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