The Lae Port has been opened after intense negotiations between landowner factions, unions andtheIndependent Public Business Corporation.
Talks resumed, withthe IPBe’s Managing director, Wasantha Kumarasiri who has given indications that negotiations with Australian company, Patrick’s Stevedores would be reconsidered.
Early Tuesday morning hundreds of clans, men and women fromthe Labu and Ahi in Lae closedthe Lae Ports givingthe government forty-eight hours to respond to demandsthey made five months ago.
They gotthe attention ofthe government. Lae’s police boss, Ivan Lakatani, met withthe landowners and just after 3pmthe Wasantha Kumarasiri, made an emergency trip to Lae, arriving an hour after landowners had gthered atthe Melanesian Hotel.
The landowners presentedtheir grievances that included a demand forPNG Ports to end negotiations with an Australian stevedoring company.
The clans andthe union argued that bringing in an Australian company to do whatthey are already doing will take away about four hundred jobs from local Morobeatns.
The provincial government meanwhile has been pushing for an overall benefits package for theLandowners,their companies andthe stakeholders.
Morobe Governor, Kelly Naru, said Morobeatns had long been suppressed intheir own province but urged parties involved inthe negotiations to be less confrontational.
Negotiations resumed on Wednesday 8am atthe Melanesian Hotel.Landowner representative said all six demands presented tothe IPBe have been taken into account. There are also indications that on-going negotiations betweePNG Ports andthe Australian company will be re-examined.
At 10am, workers reopenedthe Port and heavy machinery began working again. Betthe episode has reignited tensions between various factions withinthe Ahi andthe Labu.