Luke Rawalai | The Fiji Times | October 10, 2016
CHIEFS in Bua have been advised to seek sound advice from Government departments and various organisations before entering into bauxite mining projects.
Speaking while officially opening the Bua Provincial Council meeting last week Ministry of iTaukei Affairs permanent secretary Naipote Katonitabua said chiefs needed to acquire the consent of mataqali members before entering into any contract.
He said chiefs needed to be mindful of the dialogue that needed to be undertaken with respective stakeholders.
Deliberating on their roles, Mr Katonitabua told chiefs that they needed to work closely with their respective provincial council offices.
Reflecting on the procedures, Mr Katonitabua said that they were put in place to ensure that natural resources were not overexploited.
He appealed to chiefs to conduct meetings and consultations with respective stakeholders before making any decisions on the mining of minerals such as bauxite or any projects affecting their natural resources.
He said chiefs and traditional leaders played an important role in setting out the proper platforms for talks to take place regarding matters affecting people under their leadership.