By ZACHERY PER
LANDOWMERS of the Mt Victor gold mine in Obura-Wonenara district, Eastern Highlands, have been certified their Integrated Land Group.
Governor Julie Soso they were the first ILG in Eastern Highlands, paving the way for others “to get certified and participate meaningfully and reap maximum benefits in mineral resource projects development on your land”.
Soso was in Aiyura, the district’s headquarters on Tuesday to present the certificates to the Mt Victor ILG, the Tubirora Landowners Association and the Mt Victor Resource Limited.
“We do not want resource developers to remove everything on our land,” Soso said.
“I encourage landowners to mobilise into ILGs so that they get maximum benefits.”
She gave examples of landowners missing out on benefits from the Ramu One hydro-power project in Yonki, and the Bilimoia gold mine.
She said landowners had become more educated.
“One such group is the Mt Victor ILG.
“I am proud to issue certificates and want others like the Mt Crater gold in Lufa district, part of Elk Antelop Oil and LNG projects in Gulf branch into parts of Okapa district and many mineral explorations in the province,” he said.
“Our province has huge gold deposits that we need to explore and give chances to landowners to form ILGs to participate in the development.”
MP Merrah Minne Kipefa praised the landowners for getting their ILG certified and promised to support them.
Kipefa said there were more work to be done to reach the mine’s full potential to benefit landowners.
By ZACHERY PER