Thursday, February 10, 2011
Chan calls for unity to address mining issues
By MARY TULASOI
UPNG Journalism Student
MEMBER for Namatanai Byron Chan called on the people of Sentral Niu Ailan Local Level Government (SNALLG) to unite and work with their newly sworn-in President, Mr. Soka Toligai, and address the two major issues of concern being the Simberi and Nautilus Mining respectively, within the LLG.
Member Chan made the statement last week (Wednesday 02 February), at Konos, during the Swearing-In ceremony of the Sentral Niu Ailan LLG President Mr. Toligai, and three other LLG Members,Ward 1 Member Mr. Timothy Karas, and two Women’s Representatives, Mrs. Goretti Agaum and Mrs. Albertha Kilala.
Mr Chan said the National Government has continuously failed the people of New Ireland Province, first with non payment of the outstanding Lihir MOA, and also the issuing of Mining License to Nautilus without proper consultation with the New Ireland Provincial Government and landowners, and the Simberi Mining Landowners disputes.
He urged the people to work together in unity with their appointed leaders in order for positive development and results to take place in the LLG and the province.
“We all have to be united to achieve our goals. Politics alone will not bring any development. If we’re united, our politics will be good and render positive outcome,” said Mr. Chan.
Meanwhile, Deputy Governor Mrs. Florence Stocken said New Ireland Province will move forward if people come together and defend whatever is rightfully theirs.
“Our land is our wealth. Our sea/ocean is our wealth, so let’s not let the National Government and foreigners rip off our heritage from us”.
She said the only way forward for New Ireland Province is through Autonomy.