Barrick Gold looks to PNG government to sort out a mess that the Canadian mining company itself has created
Post Courier | December 30, 2019
Operator of the Porgera gold mine in Enga Province, Barrick Niugini Limited (BNL) has called on the government for an urgent intervention in Porgera after a protracted violent conflict between armed warring factions of illegal miners.
The operator stated that the illegal miners are believed to be from Tari.
The incident happened earlier this week on the Porgera Special Mining Lease which the clash occurred in the mine’s open pit area where numerous gun shots were discharged.
There were also reports from community members that many other combatants with injuries from the gun battle were carried away from the area by their accomplices.
The gun battle came just 24 hours after mine security personnel and members of the PNG police recov-ered the body of a woman who had died of significant injuries, including gun-shot wounds, within the mine’s operations area. The woman was also believed to be from Tari.
“BNL is appalled by the level of lawlessness that is continuing to pervade the Porgera district, and is particularly concerned by the senseless killing and the use of rearms by warring groups of illegal miners who have invaded Porgera from other areas.
“The on-going use of rearms by outside criminal elements continues to create fear among the community and local mine employees,” a company spokesman said.
“The company remains ready to support the government’s commitment to a long-term solution for Porgera’s law and order problems, following discussions between Police Minister Bryan Kramer and the community during the Minister’s recent visit to the district.”