We the Nzera Clan of Sio Village and Levo Clan of Karangan Village are TOTALLY AGAINST the current logging operations in the Wasu area in Tewae- Siassi District in Morobe Province.
The logging is done by Lucky Logging (PNG) Limited, a foreign owned Malaysian Company, under two Forest Clearing Authorities (FCA 13-02 and 13-03). The FCAs were supposedly issued for Cattle farming, Hunting and Forestry.
However, there hasn’t been any cattle farmed or hunting activities. It has all been logging. By end 2022, Sermon FCA (locally known as Sugunum) has exported logs worth K38 million and Wasu K12 million in a space of just four months.
We have not given our free, prior and informed consent. We never signed up for this destructive development.
There wasn’t any public hearing held in the village where our concerns can be heard. Even our attempts to raise our concerns and opposition to the Provincial and National Forest Offices have fallen on deaf eyes, meanwhile logs are currently been shipped out in numbers with nothing to show for in terns of promised development (roads, bridges and community projects) on the ground.
All we see before our eyes are waterways destroyed and environment damaged beyond repair. Our culturally significant and valuable trees are been felled and dumped as rejected logs especially in the Buenu Log Pond. Our community cemetery in Bongo Village has been destroyed with police aid to make way for the Kulavi/ Bongo Log Point; our historical and cultural site at Kulavi have also been destroyed.
State Police is currently been engaged by the logging company to suppress locals who oppose the illegal operations. Worker death rate is also high. The most recent been on Monday 25th September 2023, mainly due to work safety.
Once again, WE ARE TOTALLY AGAINST LOGGING which destroys our land, our environment and our livelihood and causes disharmony amongst clan members and the communities who once lived in harmony.
We therefore demand that the following be dealt with immediately:
1. PNG Forest Authority to immediately stop the logging operations by Lucky Logging Limited in the Wasu LLG
2. The Company to stop paying royalties to other non- land owning clans until our current land matter is resolved;
3. The Company to saw these culturally significant and valuable felled and rejected logs for us to use for our classrooms and community projects.
4. The Company to pay for environmental and cultural damages
5. Police Commissioner must intervene and Policemen are removed from these logging sites.
6. PNG Forest Authority to do a complete and comprehensive audit into FCAs including the Wasu and Sermon.
7. PNG Forest Authority must extend the current moratorium on FCAs
We look forward to an immediate responses on our demands.
CONCERNED GENUINE LANDOWNERS OF SIO AND KARANGAN VILLAGES