By Delly Waigeno – EMTV News, Port Moresby
This week in Parliament, the Leaders of Central Province were told that environmental concerns and shareholding issues on the Tolukuma Mine could be addressed through the existing Memorandum of Agreement.
The comments come after Kairuku-Hiri MP, Peter Isoaimo, requested Mining Minister, Byron Chan, to ask the new operators of Tolukuma to build a tailings Dam for its waste, before reopening the Mine.
Mr Isoaimo’s questions come after meetings with community leaders living downstream, along the Angabanga River.
During Questions Without Notice, Mr Isoaimo asked the Mining Minister if he could ask the new operator of Tolukuma Mine, a Singaporean company namely, Asidokona Mining Resources, to build a tailings dam before commencing operations.
Minister Chan, who witnessed the takeover in July this year, began by saying he was told that consultations were held prior to the sale.
Newly elected Member for Goilala, William Samb, raised a Point of Order, and said no such discussions were held where the people could raise any concerns.
Minister Chan went on to insist that talks had been held.
Mr Isoaimo also asked why Central Provincial Government was only given 10% of nominal shareholding and not preferential shareholding.
Central Governor, Kila Haoda, agreed.
Minister Chan said he was not privy to any of the discussions, towards the sale of Tolukuma, or to any of the deliberations on the percentages, shareholding and equity because Petromin was the company responsible.
On the other hand, the Minister said the existing MOA would allow for dialogue.