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Minister Marape appeals for Cease to threats, intimidation and Guns in Hela and SHP

Warlords with high-powered guns in Nipa, SHP. Photo supplied 
"Present issue they have is a K20 million claim for Angore township and another K12 million for their business development grant allocated in 2011"

“I appeal to our citizens in Angore , Hides and Komo areas to cease the use of threats, intimidations and guns as a means of getting your grievances heard and settled.”

That’s according to Minister for Finance and local MP for Tari Pori in a press statement today.

He made these comments in light of the blockage and looting that is taking place on the fringes of Angore and Hides gas fields this week.

“I know the present issue they have is a K20 million claim for Angore township and another K12 million for their business development grant allocated in 2011, which is presently locked in court by the doing of one of their own tribesmen.”

“Our people must restrain from threats and intimidations, and if genuine issues remain outstanding then civilized dialogue is the way to go for us now and into the future.”

He added that whilst there might be some elements of genuineness in those issues raised, the continual manner in the use of unlawful means to secure attention is repulsive in the face of many issues our Government must handle not only for Hela and SHP but the entire country.

“The O’Neill Abel government is not far from you LOs, in fact on record we are the most fulfilling government in the history of our nation to the flight of many of our landowner issues not only in Oil and Gas areas but mining as well in terms delivering to outstanding commitments and also new O’Neill government signature policies like greater free carry equity empowerments.”

For Hela and SHP, our gas and oil fields been producing since 1990, yet only after 2012 are we seeing serious signs of development happening or about to happen.

Has Tari ever seen a sealed road? No, but it started to happen after 2012 and from what I am told the Halimbu sealing to Nogoli was to see its first laying of bitumen yesterday but the uprisings of Angore forced it’s closure again. This project was awarded in 2015, but lawlessness continues to hamper work.

“I appeal to our local leaders of youths, clans, and PDLs as well as leaders of facility site areas like Komo and the Pina plant site, use myself and my two colleagues MPs and our Provincial Governor to be your middle men with National Government in a peaceful way to get your grievances out to National Government.”

“If the genuine legitimate commitments aren’t responded to then I will be the first to support you tribesmen for court action as a final resort but not the use of violence and destructions.”

He added, “So far I have received no invitation personally to hear your issues and relay to government, how then can you say government has not been responsive hence your resort to lawlessness . I am again opening my office to our people in Hela to channel your issues through instead of your continual use of threats because one day soon your guns will be rendered useless mark my word as the hand of government is much longer then what many of you think.”

“ In July I will take officers from National Departments through our project areas in Hela to hear you again and also tell you all on how far we going in as far as getting your due benefits in royalty and equity out to you all. One off payments like outstanding commitments will disappear, you only have to see how your cousins from PDL 1 and 7 has used up K20million and K15million respectively into thin air just this year.”

“I ask you all to be fair to the government, assist us getting the clan vetting complete and we start to get your entitlements out to you all. For your other issues please channel through me and Governor Philip Undialu plus our two other colleagues in Minister Petrus Thomas and Vice Minister Manasseh Makiba to pass on to Government. Our government is in office hence why are you evading us?”

“I ask you all to remove blockages and we work through the normal channels of dialogue again.”

Minister Marape further stated that tomorrow his office will facilitate a meeting between all concerned leaders of project areas and encouraged all to meet to air issues of common concerns and we collectively map a way forward.
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