The National- Tuesday, October 18, 2011
By Pisai Guma
The Morobe Mining Joint Venture and the Landowner Company, NKW Ltd, have failed to support other landowners companies in the Hidden Valley Mine, it has been claimed.
Naiyyo Kwamio, the deputy chairman of Nakuwi Association and Nauti Youths Pressure Group in Watut, Bulolo District, Morobe, said under the agreement signed in 2005 the priority for spin-off opportunities should have been given to the local companies. But he said this was not done.
Kwamio and 10 leaders from the group support the call by Nakuwi Landowner Association’s Rex Mauri to shut down the mine if the conditions were not met.
They said the MMJV had failed to comply with the provisions in the agreement while the NKW Ltd was “very arrogant to the landowners’ demands”.
They have sent separate petitions and a letter to the National Planning and Monitoring Minister Sam Basil saying the NKW had set up three major landowner companies representing Nauti, Kuembu and Winima.
But no contracts were awarded while the groups were “given between K100 and K200, 000 as dividends only once”. “How the figures were determined as dividends and paid out remains a mystery. The MKW Ltd receives K60 Million contracts per year from MMJV but there is no impact whatsoever on the lives of our people.” The leaders claimed.
“We as shareholders to NKW Ltd are kept in total darkness. We don’t know who benefits from it. To make matters worse, MMJV and NKW Ltd deny youths and the Bulolo district employment opportunities.”
Last July 5, Morobe Governor Luther Wenge also wrote to the general manager for sustainability and external affairs, Davis Wissink, requesting that small contracts below K10 million be awarded to the landowner companies.