MAC/20: Mines and Communities

Crater Mountain gold prospect in Papua New Guinea

Published by MAC on 2004-03-01

Crater Mountain gold prospect in Papua New Guinea

Letter to the National, PNG

1st March 2004

I refer to the advertisement by Chimbu Governor Alphones Willie (The National, Feb 23) in relation to a call by landowners on Macmin, NGG, Celtic Minerals and Mining Department for recognition on the Crater Mountain Gold Project.

The Governor has done very well in order to have a mine developed.

Unfortunately, we feel that the Salt-Nomane people have been misrepresented and not identified to claims as they are the landowners of Crater Mountain. We want this group of people of Karimui/Haia to make clear to us where they stand, whom they work for and which part of Crater Mountain they represent. We would like to say that the Nimi prospect area, which straddles the Chimbu and Eastern Highlands provinces, is traditional Karimui/Haia land. It is our hunting zone and we have sago growing there. No one from outside will claim that area.

The Governor has to note that there is no Karimuis involving with the Salt/Nomane people because they have formed an association illegally without seeking interest and consulting the people of Karimui/Haia. The chairman John So Edward is not recognised or appointed by the people of Karimui/Haia. Also Karimuis have not attended some of the major meetings held in Port Moresby, including the recent one at Granville Motel. We want all the executives and the chairman of "Nimi Resources Owners Association" to quit because we, the people of Karimui/Haia, plan to form our own association. At this stage, no one should lay claim to our resources on Crater Mountain until all outstanding issues are resolved. There is also a possible danger that this will cause damages to the lives of more than 28,000 people who live along the Nimi Rivers to Pio and Purari of Gulf province and the Ihu people because their sources of food is mainly the rivers. Therefore, we have to make a careful decision before the mining company comes in.

Ruben Yombe,
Councillor Sorio Bero Uraru &
Committee of the Crater Mountain Wildlife Management

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