Kekeno: Conduct a thorough investigation

National, Normal

The National, Friday 27th January 2012

THE government must conduct a thorough investigation into the massive landslide which buried alive scores of people in Southern Highlands, Koroba-Kopiago MP John Kekeno says.
He puts the blame squarely on the developers and contractors of the PNG LNG project.
Kekeno urges the government to assist the affected families with relief supplies.
His joint district budget and planning committee is also assisting the families and the search operation with K50,000.
What also needs to be determined is whether the contractor had any environmental plans and relocation plans prior to setting up the quarry there, he said.
The investigation team should also find out if other projects in the area have environment and relocation plans – to avoid future disasters.
Those believed to be buried alive include people from Koroba-Kopiago.
He described the disaster as man-made because the contractor had been piling waste-soil and rocks when it could have disposed of them elsewhere.
 “I’m blaming the developer and the contractor for the man-made disaster and they have to be held responsible,’’ he said.
“They should not blame nature as it was their doing to disturb the environment – although there was a quarry some years back.”
He also called on the landowners and others to keep calm and allow an investigation to take place.