By PISAI GUMAR
THE Zifasing community in Huon Gulf, Morobe agreed this week to let Morobe Mining Joint Venture (MMJV) build an access pipeline through their land.
The pipeline from the interior Wafi-Golpu project site is anticipated to cross over the Watut and Markham rivers and run through clan land in Wampar before reaching the Lae main wharf.
Based on an MMJV mining engineering plan and the Mining Act section 108, Special Mining Lease (SML) 10 caters for mining easement 91 (ME 91) pipeline and mining easement 93 (ME 93) northern access road.
Zifasing village land mobilisation chairman Nathan Aquila told Chief Mining Warden Andrew Gunua and MMJV community affairs manager David Masani said that the entire community agreed to this pipeline proposal.
Aquila also asked whether it would be possible for MMJV to build a pump station on customary land instead of the Markham Farm, which was a State lease. Masani told Aquila that the decision to build a pump station was based on the mining engineering plan but the nature and magnitude of the operation at Wafi-Golpu would determine if there would be need be expand onto customary land in future.
Gunua and Kevin Gamenu from the Mineral Resources Authority (MRA) are conducting the warden hearings with landowners at Yanta and Hengabu from Mumeng, Bulolo, Babuaf and others anticipated to be impacted by the mine pipeline and access road.
Masani told the villagers that the 32 km road would start from the interior project site and cross the major Watut and Markham rivers as well as the three small creeks.
Meanwhile, Saab-Babuaf clans from Mare and Chiatz villages interjected and raised concern over the course of the pipeline from Wafi across Watut.
They said the pipeline would encroach on their land so they would like to know the full extent of the environmental impacts.
By PISAI GUMAR