Acting PM tells O’Neill to pay outstanding MoA

National, Normal

The National – Friday, December 17, 2010

ACTING Prime Minister Sam Abal has directed Treasurer Peter O’Neill to execute outstanding payments of MoA funds for the LNG-impacted areas before the end of the year.
Speaking at a seminar hosted by the Hela Transitional Authority in Port Moresby yesterday, the acting prime minister said he had instructed O’Neill to put out a public notice by today detailing when and how landowners would be paid depending on their submissions.
Abal said although the financial year had closed, the landowners had waited for a long time and an extension was needed to address their issue.
Meanwhile, a Hela leader Andreas Hara Wabiria also raised concern that with the establishment of the new Hela province, a new agreement between the LNG developer, state and the province was needed.
“Hela province is not a partner in the current agreement and does not know where it stands,” Wabiria said.
Former politician and lawyer Alfred Kaiabe also expressed similar sentiments, calling on the state and developer to clearly state plans for the remaining gas in the LNG project after the 10.5 trillion cubic feet of gas had been extracted in 30 years under the present agreement.
He also called on the government to fast track the boundary processes so that Hela could have its own administration in place after the 2012 general elections.