Payment date set for landowners


TARI-Pori MP James Marape has told PNG LNG project landowners that they will be paid their entitlements by early next year if the clan-vetting exercise is completed by December.
Marape said that he had spoken to Petroleum and Energy Minister Fabian Pok who was assembling a team to ensure that “clan vetting is completed at the earliest”.
He said Pok would announce his programme soon.
“When that programme is established, we want to call upon every clan member to assemble and complete the clan-identification process,” he said.
“The programme will only identify the clans. Our people must understand that in 2009, when the umbrella benefits sharing agreement was done in Kokopo, the size of the take-home (benefit) for each clan was defined.
“I encourage our landowners to assist the process of correct clan-vetting, isolating fake clans and others who drop onto the table by thinking that they can easily bypass correct clan-vetting.”
Marape said the petroleum development license (PDL) areas were defined.
“Those living in PDL areas must help by correctly identifying clans,” he said.
“I want the Hela people to know that when the process starts, it will be a transparent and public process at PDL areas.
“I’m encouraging Department of Petroleum to do it transparently. The team will identify which clans are the proper beneficiaries.
“I’m envisaging that there will be space for dispute resolution, led by the court, with space for all stakeholders to assist the clan-vetting process.
“We will expedite the process and allow it to be completed next month  or early December.
“We want the exercise to be completed by the end of the year, so that early next year, landowners will start receiving benefits and royalties.”
Marape also said the issue of PDL chairmanship had caused so much strife in Hela and must be addressed.
He said the issue had caused a lot of problems with the clan-vetting exercise.
“I want to tell every landowner leader that we, by way of government policy, will restrict petroleum development license chairmanship to only one term of three to four years,” Marape said.

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