Bougainville Islands News

Central Bougainville Women’s Group Against Mining

A group of Central Bougainville protested against the proposed Memorandum of Agreement signing on Wednesday June 14.

The women said they raised their concerns as they are the custodians of their land pass through their matrilineal lineage.

They were supported by the youth, men and children who protested against the Memorandum of Agreement (MoA) saying they do not want the Bougainville Copper Limited come back to Panguna.

They carried placards and banners with some reading: “Women Own The Land”, “Do Not Dig My Land,” “BCL Not Welcomed in Panguna”, “Don’t create Another Bloodshed,”.

The march ended at the Special Mining Lease Osikaiyang Landowners Association office, where they voiced their grievance to the former Chairman, Lawrence Daveona and his executives.

Panguna landowner, Bernadine Gemel Kama said, they have voiced their concerns to Mr Daveona, claiming they will sign the agreement which lacked their consent of women who are culturally the true landowners.

She also said the Panguna issue will cause division among the people of Bougainville because this mine has caused bloodshed of reeking war and destruction, with many lives lost during the civil war.

She said the Panguna Mine reopening, was an issue, in the interest for only a minority of people especially men, labelling it as which is a dangerous move by the Autonomous Bougainville Government, which a second crisis should not happen again.

And the message was clear, no mining, no BCL. And they are against the signing saying it must not proceed this Friday.

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