Sandaun wants license

Source: The National

The West Sepik provincial government is seeking a licence from the Government to export logs.

Acting Governor Paul Negai told Forest Minister Douglas Tomuriesa and PNG Forest Authority managing director Kanawi Pouru during their visit to the province on Monday that West Sepik wanted to export its own logs.

“The province has seen very little benefit from logging companies in the area,” Negai said. “Everyday we are seeing ships leaving with logs but we only get very little benefit from it,” Negai told  Tomuriesa and Pouru.

“I propose that the Forest Act be amended so that the money comes back to the people. The law must fit the needs and wants of the people.”

Negai said the provincial government was looking at creating a joint venture with the landowners in  development projects in the area.

Tomuriesa said landowner participation should be seen in every development project.

“We will now bring some power back to the landowners.

Seventy-four SABLs (agriculture and business leases) in the country have been revoked due to no evidence of land owners taking part in the decision-making of projects,” he said.

“I am not only here for the companies but I am here for the landowners.

“It takes leadership to make things happen.”

“Where there is leadership there will be development, leadership should start from us.

“The forest is everybody’s business, therefore we must look after our forest and make certain that all loggers must abide by the rules and conditions given to them.”