Official outlines use of Ok Tedi proceeds

National, Normal

The National, Wednesday October 9th, 2013

 PROCEEDS from Ok Tedi mine flows to the consolidated revenue of Government and are used with tax and other forms of revenue to fund recurrent expenditure such as salaries and wages, a Government official said.

Speaking on behalf of Prime Minister Peter O’Neill, he said the proceeds paid for medical drugs and funded development projects in the country.

“The Treasury Department has a record of these expenditures. The Department of National Planning and Rural Development has a record of development projects funded in the budget,” he said.

He was responding to a statement by PNG Sustainable Development Programme chairman Sir Mekere Morauta on the issue.

“While the national government has to spread its resources thinly in the country, the PNG Sustainable Development Program does not have to do that,” he said.

“Its main focus is the Western province. It was set up to repay the people there for the massive damage done to their environment and their way of life.

“If PNGSDP had spent K5 billion since 2002, then there is nothing to show for. This is why the MPs from the province approached the prime minister for change, to ensure PNGSDP become accountable to the huge wealth at its disposal.

“Sir Mekere cannot be boasting about Daru Port, Purari Dam feasibility, or Cloudy Bay Timber. These are projects where millions of kina have been wasted with no impact on the lives of the people of Western. 

“No one can sit back and allow this kind of wastage to continue while the mine people suffer.”