By Vasinatta Yama – EMTV News, Mt Hagen
At the Warden hearing yesterday, many of the Porgera landowners from the Special Mining Lease (SML) areas and the Lease for Mining Purpose (LMP) areas supported Porgera Joint Venture to extend its license under certain conditions.
They want PJV Barrick Limited to complete its unfinished business with the landowners and to re-negotiate the deals given by their fathers and forefathers 30 years ago.
Yesterday, was crucial for landowners, as it was their first time after 30 years to give their views to the government before a Special Mining Lease license is awarded to a developer.
One of the major concerns raised by both factions going for and against PJV Barrick Limited is to re-negotiate the 2.5 percent royalty payment to the landowners. They wanted an increased percentage, and say this is subjected to a re-negotiation of deals.
Lagaip Porgera MP, Tamait Kapili who was present at the warden hearing yesterday, promised that as the represented leader, he will push forward his people’s view for re-negotiation of deals.
Landowners from SML 1P, where the gold mine is, including other landowners from the Lease for Mining Purposes area of LMP 3, 41, 61, 77, 82, 102 and other smaller LMP’s and Exploration Mine areas of the total 24 agents have agreed for the extension of mine.
Mainly, for PJV Barrick Limited to remain and complete its programs and projects in the area, to address social, human rights and other environmental issues and compensations to landowners, and continue on with landowner benefit programs.
Justice Foundation Chairman, Jonathan Paraia, who led the faction going against PJV, has appealed for the National Government to amend the Mining Act 1992.
He said landowners have been spectators for too long and amending the Act will benefit them to have a fair distribution of wealth and to partake in decision making.
Mineral Resources Authority told EMTV News they are aware of Paraia’s concern, as it was already given to them in written form, and was also copied to the Prime Minister’s office. They said this process will come after the first process which is the Warden hearing.
Meanwhile, a Human Rights group, comprised of mostly landowners have also agreed for the extension of the mine, for the developer to address their grievances.
A group known as Illegal Miners, mostly youths from other parts of Enga Province, has already become part of the landowners, by agreeing for the extension.
They were not given a chance to talk because they are not legal landowners, however, they supported with their banners for Barrick to continue.
Follow this link https://emtv.com.pg/porgera-warden-hearing/?utm_source=dlvr.it&utm_medium=facebook to know the Porgera landowner’s demands at the Warden hearing.