Joan Bailey | Post Courier | June 24, 2016
LANDOWNERS from Kusi village in Waria local level government, Bulolo District have appealed to Pacific Niugini Minerals and MGL Limited to sort out the environmental damage caused to their environment.
Chairman Simon James and his assistant Sakixy Kabre told Post-Courier that the two companies started exploration drilling for minerals at their village in 2010. They said the exploration work progressed really well with the developers excited with the results where evidence of gold, copper and silver was discovered only seven metres deep into the earth and of high grade.
“Due to the fact that we lack government services, we offered our land that is rich in minerals to the developers to be extracted and bring in developments into our villages in order to increase our living standard,” Mr James said.
However, Mr James said they were shocked that the PNM and MGL Limited just left in 2014 without any proper explanation given or conversation held with landowners on their reasons to cease work. He said until now, they are still awaiting the response from the two explorers on the future plan of the Kusi prospect and also environmental damage caused.
Mr James outlined the environmental damage included deep trenches cut into the earth of two to three kilometres, several drill beds created, large surface clearance where forest are cleared chasing away all forest habitat, landslides, destruction of kawiwi (betelnut) plantation, bringing water supply from the mountains to their campsite doesn’t have a proper drain and it flows free so its continuous flowing runs into food gardens causing soil erosion.
Mr James appealed to PNM and MGL Limited to immediately consult the Kusi prospecting area landowners and solve the issue with them.