28 Feb 2013

Resource owners adamant over input into Bougainville's Panguna plans

8:15 pm on 28 February 2013

A representative of resource owners in the Panguna region of Papua New Guinea's Bougainville says they want to ensure they have some control of the province's new mining policy.

The deputy head of the Bougainville Resource Owners Representative Council, Chris Damana, says this week's forum in Buka is invaluable for airing concerns about a possible re-opening of the huge moth-balled mine.

He says they have been critical of Canberra's apparent involvement in drawing up the province's new mining policy which he says brings back memories of what happened more than 40 years ago when the controversial mine was started.

But Mr Damana says the resource owners have been assured it is only a draft and they will have input.

"We, the resource's owners are trying to take some control on this. I mean we want to make this mining policy as ours, because it will bless us or it will affect us in the future."

Chris Damana of the Bougainville Resource Owners Representative Council