By PISAI GUMAR
National Planning and Monitoring Minister Richard Maru has reminded customary landowners along the Lae-Nadzab highway to refrain from selling land portions to settlers but manage their land well to lure investors.
“We do not need settlements, stop giving land to settlers and become a spectator on your own land,” Maru said.
Maru told the landowners to mobilise themselves to plan how to utilise their land purposely for development and benefits.
“More settlements will bring more social issues to landowners, the Government and investors,” Maru told Yalu landowners after touring the 250-hectare Yalu plantation with Innovative Agro Industry Ltd chief executive Lior Crystal and other delegates on Sunday.
Maru said the value of the 250 hectares would be converted into shares for landowners under the Mopong Business Group. The Yalu Industrial Park will be converted to a dairy farm to produce milk, yogurt and ice cream.
“This project belongs to the people, therefore the Morobe government, Huon Gulf district and Wampar council need to become shareholders in partnership with landowners, the national government and the investor,” Maru said.
He urged Morobe Governor Ginson Saonu not to ignore the project due to political differences between former governor Kelly Naru who is from Yalu village.
He said products from the farm would supply the demand in Mamose and the Highlands, and minimise import and retail costs by adding value to local products.
Crystal said the supply chain in dairy production would involve locals grazing more cows and growing corn and maze.
“We have the huge land on which everything will be grazed and grown to feed the production line.”
By PISAI GUMAR