LNG project construction must go ahead, says leader

National, Normal

The National – Monday, December 6, 2010

HIDES Special Purpose Authority chairman Lemson Mabiria wants a special committee to be set up to deal with issues that have forced work stoppage on the LNG project.
Mabiria appealed to landowners and contractors not to stop work on the Komo International Airport and site construction.
“Let the work go ahead. If there is a problem with business development grants or non-payment of contractors, then we must come together at a round table and resolve the issues.
“We must support the project to go ahead.”
He said landowners were unhappy because no money had been paid and the memorandum of agreement fund was slow in coming.
“I suggest that landowners must form a special committee to negotiate with government and developer.
“Stopping work will not help resolve anything.”
Mabiria said the LNG conditioning plant and the new airport were important projects which must be completed on time.
He also supported calls by Southern Highlands Governor Anderson Agiru that the business development grants be paid immediately.
“The seed capital must be paid quickly for landowners to participate in the project and to maximise landowner benefits as well.”
“The national government must realise that more people are coming to Port Moresby following the funds. The government must pay, otherwise, there will be problems.”
Mabiria said the UBSA and LBBSA were signed last year and it was now one year with funds still sitting with the Department of Commerce and Industry.
“I want to thank all the landowner leaders for being very patient to have waited for one year now for the seed capital.”
He said work had started on the airport, bridges and other major infrastructure in the province.