Developers told to register locals in project areas


THE developers of mineral and petroleum resources in the country have been urged to register all the people in the project areas in the National Identification (NID) project.
National Planning and Monitoring Minister Richard Maru, made the call last week in Port Moresby while praising the effort of the Government-owned Ok Tedi mine to work with the NID team in establishing an office in Western to register landowners.
He called on other resource companies including those yet to start operating such as Wafi-Golpu and Frieda Mine to facilitate registrations in their areas.
“How are you going to identify the landowners if you don’t register them?” Maru said.
“As a Government, we will not allow any company to obtain a special mining lease and a petroleum development license without first identifying landowners.
“The identification and registration of landowners is not the function of the Government.
Under the law, it is the function of the resource companies.”
According to Maru, landowners of oil and gas projects in Hela and Southern Highlands are still awaiting their royalty payments because companies did identify the correct landowners beforehand.
Maru has also called on MPs to set up NID offices in their districts.
“If (they) don’t have an ID card, (they) will not vote in 2022 election,” he said.
“All MPs should register all the people in the districts, like what the MPs in Enga are doing with the leadership of their Governor Sir Peter Ipatas.”