FIJI NEWS

No mining OK given: Seruiratu

AQELA SUSU NAMOSI The Minister of Agriculture and FijiFirst candidate nominee Inia Seruiratu yesterday reassured the people of Namosi that no mining licence had been issued for the proposed Waisoi
05 Aug 2014 08:25

Part of the crowd at the FijiFirst party yesterday. Photo: Paulini Ratulailai

AQELA SUSU
NAMOSI

The Minister of Agriculture and FijiFirst candidate nominee Inia Seruiratu yesterday reassured the people of Namosi that no mining licence had been issued for the proposed Waisoi copper mine.
Mr Seruiratu was responding to a plea by Namosi villager Lasaro Dau, 67 during the FijiFirst’s campaign meeting in Namosi yesterday.
Mr Dau pleaded with the party not approve any mining activity if they formed the government after September 17th.
He said they were worried about the environmental effects of the mine.
“We do not want them to extract the copper because it has had a lot of effects on our surroundings especially the water organisms have been extinct due to the chemicals that have been washed downstream from the drilling works at the mine,” Mr Dau said.
“We are worried about our future generation, we do not want them to think that we let the mine operate without taking into account the effects it would have on them in the future.”
Meanwhile, Mr Seruiratu informed them that some of the landowners had already talked with the Office of the Prime Minister on the environmental concerns at the mine.
“The Government has advised that every environmental concerns raised by the landowners were to be addressed by the company and that has been addressed and any future developments again the landowners will have to agree and that has been governments commitments so far on Namosi,” Seruiratu said.
“Government is not going to make any decision unless the landowners also agree to it.
“No, mining has not started; they were just doing explorations all these years. No mining license has been issued. Again, for the mining license to be issued, the next round of consultations have to take place and of course the landowners have to agree to that.”
He added, “The approval from landowners is part of the next stage but right now it’s just the environmental concerns from the exploratory work that has been undertaken and government has directed the mining company Newcrest to address these issues and of course they have address those issues as well. That is the continuation of the exploratory work as well. The mining license, the lands ministry and the stakeholders will go through that when there is a need.”
Feedback: aqela.susu@fijisun.com.fj




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