On June 20, the Post Courier reported landowners from the Wafi-Golpu area in Morobe Province were ‘up in arms’ over a new association claiming to represent their interests.
Harmony Gold and Newcrest Mining are hoping to build a gold and copper mine in the area.
The leaders from three existing associations representing Hengambu, Yanta and Babuaf said the Wafi Golpu Area Landowners Association and its business arm, Wafi Golpu Holdings Limited had been formed by people from outside the area.
Contrary to what was reported in the Post Courier, the new association and business group are both registered with the Investment Promotion Authority.
The Wafi Golpu Area Landowners Association was registered on 8 November 2017 by Judah Jimmy. The objectives of the association are:
- To engage and encourage members in the community to participate in the association’s projects to protect their environment from destruction as well as to reduce the impact of environmental destruction caused by mining exploration and development
- To reduce unemployment in the mining communities by increasing the employment of youths and other members of the member communities.
- To liaise with funding agencies with the Government and non-government organizations both domestically and internationally for the benefit of the Association, it’s members and it’s affiliates pursuance of the Association’s objectives.
- To conduct awareness in member communities on the adverse impacts of mining and mining related activities.
- To mobilize member communities in protecting their environment from the adverse impacts of mining and mining related activities.
- To secure spin off business activities from mining and mining related activities in member communities.
- To design, engage, implement and monitor business projects in the member communities.
- To prohibit the payment of any dividends or payment in the nature of dividends or distribution of any gains to the members thereof, rather divert all properties, assets, profits and income of this association exclusively ‘for education, and other purposes only in promoting the objectives of the Association,
Wifi Golpu Holdings Limited was registered on 23 May 2018. It has four directors who are also the shareholders in the company. They are Nawae Boga, Defo Camillus, Bill Itamar and Holmes Kissing.