Post Courier | December 15, 2016
THE government has been called upon to review their decisions and sign the revised mining act for implementation.
Hidden Valley’s Nakuwi Landowners Association president Rex Mauri said this yesterday following the announcement by Prime Minister Peter O’Neill during the mining conference in Sydney, Australia, recently to defer the revised mining act.
“We the landowners from Hidden Valley are appealing for Prime Minister Peter O’Neill and Mining Minister Byron Chan to review the decision,” he said.
He said Mr O’Neill had announced during the mining conference that the revised mining act will be deferred until after the 2017 General Election.
“This is a slap in the face for landowners, contributing individuals and entities efforts’ in compiling the act.
“This revised mining act is vital because once it is signed, then the benefits rollout will surely reach the affected host project communities and all stakeholders in the country.
“However, it is very frustrating and the deferral indicates that the PM is serving the interest of the developer and not the landowners of PNG.
“I have been actively involved in the operation of Hidden Valley mine for almost 34 years, yet I don’t experience any tangible developments occurring in affected communities of Morobe Mining Joint Venture, and the living standards of the people are still low,” Mr Mauri said.
He claimed that the gross payment of the mine is divided as two per cent belonging to the landowners which is shared among the national government, provincial government, local level government and landowners, while the developer is enjoying 98 per cent. Mr Mauri said that these are some issues that are highlighted and amended in the new revised mining act so the political leaders in mining provinces must support the call and raise their voice about the decision and ensure the mining act is signed and ready for implementation.
“We cannot drag this on as operations are continuing every day and changes are happening to our environment. Let us all voice our concern to ensure we benefit fully.”