New MP gives hope

National, Normal

The National, Tuesday July 31st, 2012

LANDOWNERS of the Porgera mine are hopeful of progress in their talks with the mine owners now that one of their own, Nixon Koeaka Mangope, is a member of parliament.
Mangope who won the Laiagam-Porgera parliamentary seat standing as an independent is chairman of the Porgera Development Authority (PDA).
A spokesman for the Akaili Tange Association (ATA) in Porgera, Karath Mal, claimed that the Porgera gold mine created a lot of social issues ever since it started in 1989.
However, Mal said they had no strong leader in parliament to talk on their behalf.
“As a result, landowners of Porgera have suffered badly from the mining impacts.
“That included displacement of villagers, contaminated rivers, lost hunting grounds and land for growing food crops.
He said their livelihood had been badly affected because of the impacts from the mine.
Mal said the association had been working closely with mine management at Porgera and its parent company, Australia Pacific in Canada, to review the mining agreement in a peaceful way.