DOREEN POLOH WAIM
A WARD councillor from the Wampar LLG in Huon Gulf, says continuous pollution from Hidden Valley mine in Bulolo has affected the
communities living along the Markham River.
Douglas Gedisa said since the mine started four years ago, chemical had polluted the river system and had made the water unsafe to use and drink.
He said the lives of more than 1,000 people were affected because they depended on the river for domestic use and fishing.
Most gardens by the river side had also been affected, Mr Gedisa said.
He said there were instances where dead fish were found floating on the river or lying near the river banks.
“People were also getting sores on their skin after bathing in the river.”
Mr Gedisa said his people were facing health risks and environmental damages.
He urged the Morobe provincial government and the Morobe Mining Joint Venture to seriously look into the issue.
Mr Gedisa said in order to avoid using the river the communities needed water supply or water storage facilities.
He said that the mining company had to make consideration for compensation for the affected communities since the start of the pollution.