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Monday, September 20, 2010

Chan supports call for royalty distribution review

THE Member for Namatanai Byron Chan has renewed earlier calls made by three presidents of his electorate for the Provincial Government to fast track the decision made on the 10 percent royalty issue.

He urged the Provincial Government and landowners of Lihir and Nimarmar Local Level Governments (LLGs) to review the royalty distribution of 20 percent each district, as this issue of royalties was supposed to be used to develop Namatanai so that it can sustain Lihirians after the mine closure.

“I instigated the whole issue of royalties for the districts back in 2005 which was agreed to by the landowners and Nimarmar LLG and the National Government in 2007.

“I raised the issue of royalty for the districts, especially Namatanai, as it lacks the capacity to develop along with Lihir as Lihir progresses rapidly leaving Namatanai behind, yet Namatanai will be responsible for Lihir and Lihirians later.

“I want to develop Namatanai and prepare Namatanai for the future for the people of Lihir after the mine closes in terms of getting services. The fact is that Kavieng is so far and costly and to develop Namatanai will help a lot of people. Not only that but the fact is that Namatanai will be the centre for Lihir and Lihirians, and Lihir Sustainable Development (LSDP) projects, programs and royalties must focus on developing Namatanai as a whole.

“Another reason why the 10 percent royalty issue is crucial is the principle of derivation. It stipulates that where most is taken, much must be given.”

The Member also noted that with the vast land and sea mass Namatanai has as compared to Kavieng district which is three times the size he said a lot of funding is needed.

“This means that we have three times the size of problems, difficulties and worries in dealing with development issues. Namatanai must not be denied its potential to develop alongside Lihir and the extra 10 percent royalty will go a long way for the people of Namatanai,” Mr Chan said.

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