By HELEN TARAWA
HELA Governor Philip Undialu pictured, says the gas agreement for the PNG LNG project signed by the Government and the companies involved had deprived the landowners of their benefits.
Undialu told The National that the calculation of the development levy was a big problem.
“When they did the gas agreement, they deducted almost 60 to 75 per cent of the development levy,” he said.
“I would like to review the agreement. Section 98 of the organic law provides for the gross value.
“What they have been paying is the net value. The net value is not supposed to be the well head value. It’s supposed to be the gross well head value. That is the big task ahead of us.”
Undialu said the accumulated funds paid in 2017 was about K45 million which was much less than what they expected to be paid.
“We were supposed to get more than that. To date we have not received any development levy yet,” he said.
He said Prime Minister Peter O’Neill had been asked to intervene.
“One of the reasons I pulled out of the PNC-led government is based on the government’s failure to address the development levy,” he said.
“People are not benefitting from the LNG project because of various reasons. The clan-vetting was supposed to be done under the Oil and Gas Act which is its prerequisite before going into development.”
He fears the “same mistakes will be repeated in the Papua LNG project.
“To date after more than 500 shipments, the payments have not been released because of the clan vetting hasn’t been completed,” he said.
By HELEN TARAWA