Tag Archives: Johnson Tuke

Introduction Of Mining Bill Pushed To Next Year

Mining Minister Johnson Tuke

Post Courier | December 5, 2018

Mining Minister Johnson Tuke told the Mining and Petroleum Conference in Sydney that proposed amendments to the Mining Act (1992) will be made next year.
He said this despite previous indication of last month being the sitting that would introduce the proposed amendments.
Citing concerns from the industry and the need for independent review from within government circles, he said the amendment would still take place nonetheless citing an over 9 years consultative period.
“One of the principle priority for my ministry was to ensure the proposed mining bill is introduced in parliament in the November session in accordance with the NEC decision No 8 of 2018,’’ he said.
“The ministry had put together a working team comprising the Department of Mineral Policy and Geohazards Management, the Mineral Resources Authority, the Department of Treasury and the Office of the State Solicitor and the First Legislative Council under the oversight of the Chief Secretary to Government to prepare the mining bill for introduction in parliament, however, certain considerations have pushed the introduction of the mining bill to 2019.
“Let me say at this juncture that the mining bill and the new policies are necessary for the effective regulation of the mining industry in PNG.
“The review of the mining act was done by Papua New Guineans on both sides of the table who are well experienced in their respective fields of employment.
“The nine years of review, which three, specifically with the mining industry is testament to the scrutiny the review has undertaken.”
He also assured the industry and potential investors that the policy and legislative changes proposed by government intend to establish a foundation for growth and prosperity for the country in the years to come.
“The aspiration to protect the rights and interests of our investors is of paramount interest to the government,’’ Mr Tuke said.
“By the same token, the aspiration to ensure the rightful benefits are due to our people is also of paramount interest to the government.
“Finding the balance that best serves our collective interests and aspirations is what we have to do collectively in a responsible manner.
“While the industry has the duty to serve its respective boards, we as the leaders of the country also have the responsibility ultimately to serve our people.”

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Mining Minister Queried On Expat Leaking Confidential Info And Data

Post Courier | August 31, 2018

An expatriate who has been working with the Mineral Resources Authority is claimed to be leaking confidential data and information to mining companies.

This was made known by Usino-Bundi MP Jimmy Uguro, who asked his series of questions to Mining Minister Johnson Tuke.

In his questions he asked?:

 When will the permanent managing director be appointed?;

 When will the minister appoint the MRA board chairman?;

 Is the minister aware that there are some state highly confidential data and information being disclosed to mining companies by an expatriate working in a senior position in MRA?;

 Is the minister also aware that the same expatriate is stopping a lot of economic mining projects with minor technical issues and delaying the projects?; and

 Is minister also aware that the same person was given the work permit while still working in the country?

Mr Tuke said in the case of the MD and board chairman the MRA Act was only passed some months ago.

“This has not been gazetted yet, however, once it is passed, the board will give me three names and I will put through the process,” he said.

“For the third question I am not aware of information leaking out but I will look into it, for the fourth question, I am mindful and we have policies to go by if they are conducting themselves within the law, I have no issue with that but if he is conducting himself outside of the law, I will look into that.

“For the fifth question, yes it is true and I have given directives for officers to look into that.”

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PNG Mining Minister cautious about Hidden Valley Mine Threat

Gabriel Lahoc | NBC News | 26 August 2018

Papua New Guinea Mining Minister Johnson Tuke says he is not aware of issues arising from the Hidden Valley mine and will only respond upon receiving official complaints.

The Minister made this response to Rex Mauri, Chairman of Nakuwi Landowners Association, the traditional landowners of Hidden Valley mine operated by South African company, Harmony Gold Mining Company.

Mauri threatened to shut down the mine as a last resort approach, saying it is unfair that the government failed to review the Hidden Valley mine Memorandum of Agreement, five years after it was due, while now rushing into negotiating a new agreement for the new neighboring Wafi-Golpu project.

Mauri said, he will lead the locals in forcefully shutting down the Hidden Valley mine, after failing to get the national government to review the outdated HiddenValley Mine MoA.

Mauri claimed the state agencies responsible for agreement review is the Mineral Resources Authority, Department of Mining, Department of Environment and Conservation, Office of State Solicitor, Department of Mineral Policy and Geohazzards Management, are responsible in dragging the review process.

As a result, this has given room to the developer in abuse some operational matters, especially overlooking its obligation in prioritizing the landowners in employment, contracts and other spin-off activities.

“This government is not playing the right thing, no,” Mauri, who initially got into the mining industry 36 years ago as a young local, guiding gold explorations teams into the jungles of what is now the Hidden Valley mine, said.

The minister, who is also Kainantu MP, said there are procedures in place for landowners grievances.

He added that he has not yet received any formal complaints from Mauri, who is also president of all mine landowners associations around the country, and will only respond to accordingly.

“I only talk about what is before my table and nothing of such nature has reached my table,” he said.

“But again, we are guided, the mining industry is a guided industry, we’ve got sets of laws and acts,” Minister Tuke said.

“I will only respond as and when a letter of complaint come forth to my office but at this point in time I am fairly ignorant,” he said.

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Tuke Calls For Transparency On K92 Deal

Mining Minister Johnson Tuke

Post Courier | August 22, 2018

Mining Minister Johnson Tuke has appealed to parties to the K92 mining project memorandum of agreement to be transparent when negotiating benefits of the project.

The Minister was speaking to parties on Tuesday during the review of the MOA which is taking place in Lae this week.

“Mi laikim state imas tok tru, mi laikim line agencies blo gavman mas tok tru, kampani mas tok tru na ol landowners tu mas tok tru (I want the State to tell the truth, government line agencies to tell the truth, the developer company must tell the truth, and the landowners must tell the truth).”

Tuke said it was important to be upfront on issues and in that way, all stakeholders could achieve their objectives in a timely manner.

He urged all parties to have understanding and respect for each other during the negotiations.

The Minister raised issues with the fact that Kainantu District has not seen development as a result of the mine’s operations so far.

Mr Tuke said as long as he is the Minister for Mining, he would try to ensure that all parties, especially landowners of all mines in the country, receive benefits through their various MOA.

He said the National Government has reviewed the Mining Act 1992 in efforts to better the way government regulates the mining industry in the country.

“This is part of the government’s intervention to ensure that the country’s aspirations and interests are captured sufficiently,” Mr Tuke said.

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Wafi Landowners Slam Kokopo Meeting

Mine consultation meeting in East New Britain has left Wafi-Gulpu landowners feeling betrayed

Post Courier | August 13, 2018

The landowner group from Wafi-Golpu mine in Morobe Province has described the consultative meeting in Kokopo as political maneuvering.

Paramount chief and landowner for Babuaf tribe Ezra Kwako said such political maneuvering is a disgrace to the Wafi landowners.

Mr Kwako accused the meeting of being hijacked over to Kokopo, East New Britain Province between the government and the miner, Wafi Golpu JV.

He questioned why the sharing consultative meeting was moved to Kokopo and not held in Lae.

He said legitimate landowners were left out when the meeting was moved to Kokopo.

He said only a few of their “paper landowners” attended the Kokopo and have ill-documented the meeting as the representative of the tribe when the case was still before the National Court pending decision, which is soon to be handed down.

“We were not properly consulted and the meeting venue over to Kokopo was a denial for the better process when we are yet to identify the real legitimate landowners of Wafi mine development area,” Kwako said.

“We do not want to keep on making mistakes like that of the Hidden Valley Mining, enough is enough.

“Political interference to propagate better process is not to be entertained. Bring your discussion points to the village and let’s share with the people of mine affected areas. The MOA signing is one key document that will benefit the landowners and thus be very mindful of this current trend after all clan vetting process if fully completed.

“This is Morobe resource and we must discuss this issue amicably with well-informed dialog including the legitimate landowners in Morobe and not elsewhere,” Kwako said.

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Minister has his mind on forum to discuss Wafi-Golpu

The National aka The Loggers Times | 10 July 2018

Mining Minister Johnson Tuke will open a forum in Morobe tomorrow to discuss the Wafi-Golpu Project.
Concerned parties were expected to share views and ideas to push the project forward since the formal application by Wafi-Golpu Joint Venture Partners was initiated last year.

“I am prepared to recommend to the Head of State (Governor-General) to grant the development licence once the State is satisfied with all relevant and necessary steps taken to comfortably and confidently convince the national Government,” Tuke said.

“I am informed the State is currently putting together a set of conditions for the development licence.”

He said that from the Government’s standpoint, the benefits streams it normally offered to the province, including project area landowners and local level governments, were governed by laws, policies and practices.

Tuke said some benefit streams like equity participation, for instance, were regulated by law so there may be no room to follow any past practice.

He appealed to all the stakeholders to be reasonable in pressing their positions in this regard.

Apart from giving confidence to other international investors interested in PNG, the Wafi-Golpu Project, a fully underground mining project, will prove significant for the country and the global community as it boosts the PNG economy and foreign exchange.

According to Tuke, the Wafi-Golpu copper/gold project under the guidance of the Government and the National Executive Council would be offering a number of benefit streams predicated on a number of factors such as:

  • Benefits to reflect the level of impact on project;
  • Benefits to reflect level of development in project area;
  • Benefits to aim to achieve fair distribution to all affected by project; and
  • Benefits distribution to reflect existing policies, laws and practices.

“The Government has a duty to this country and its people to have this project approved as a matter of national importance and global interest,” Tuke said. “No amount of rhetoric will give comfort to our people, unless we demonstrate our commitment by our actions.

“The O’Neill-Abel Government wants to see the permitting and development of this project during their term of Parliament.”

He said that people should understand that this was just the beginning of the consultation forum and it would lead to benefit sharing agreements once approved by the NEC.

Tuke encouraged all project stakeholders to work together to progress all aspects of the Wafi-Golpu Project in the shortest time possible in order to realise its benefits.

It has been 30 years since the first discovery of mineral resources at Wafi-Golpu.

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Ramu NiCo landowners assured royalty payment ‘soon’

The National aka The Loggers Times | May 4, 2018

The Government has assured landowners of the Ramu NiCo project in Madang that they will receive their outstanding royalties soon.

Mining Minister Johnson Tuke reassured the four landowner association chairmen of the Ramu NiCo project, and Madang acting provincial administrator John Bivi, that as soon as procedural matters were executed by relevant authorities, the amount owed to them would be paid.

Tuke, while sympathising with the landowners, said this matter had been dragged on for too long as a result of officers not doing their jobs as expected.

He added that as soon as the appointment of the acting managing-director of Mineral Resources Authority was approved by Cabinet, royalty payment matters would be the first thing he would address.

Ramu Nico Management said it had the money to pay landowners.

Chairmen present during the meeting included Toby Bare (Kurumbukari Landowners’ Association), Sama Mellombo (Basamuk Landowners’ Association), Peter Tai (Maigari Landowners’ Association) and Jeffrey Kinang (Coastal Pipeline Landowners’ Association).

Meanwhile, the landowner chairmen were concerned that opportunists from the recent crime upheavals in Madang would use the current situation with the mine landowner against the State to instigate trouble and damage mine properties and assets in the province. Tuke, however, assured them that as minister responsible for mining he would not allow that to happen.

He told the leaders that he would be visiting landowners and the people of Madang next Friday with the new acting managing director of MRA to attend to their needs.

Ramu NiCo Mining Ltd community affairs manager Albert Tobe said the company was ready to pay royalties to the landowners as soon as the State gave them clearance.

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