Knight: Probe logging

Source: Post Courier

A LOGGING company (named) has conducted illegal operations on the West Coast of the island province, claims Manus MP Ronny Knight.

Mr Knight said this when directing a series of questions to the Minister for Forestry and Climate Change Douglas Tomuriesa in parliament yesterday.

He claimed that the logging company has so far caused a death in the place that they are harvesting the logs from.

Mr Tomuriesa told Parliament that this case to not an isolated one and is faced by all logging provinces in the country.

He reassured the member that this case will be looked into and if it means to stop the company operations that ministry will ascertain to that.

Mr Tomeriesa said this applies to all the logging provinces too. He told the house that investors must respect the law of the country.

However, Mr Knight told Parliament of a Manus registered Incorporated Land Group (named) that has been instrumental in bringing this Asian logging company into the province.

He urged the Minister to halt all the operations of the company and establish a probe to ascertain whether the company came using the right process to log forest in the province.

Meanwhile, Manus Governor Charlie Benjamin said the increased activities in the asylum processing centre have superseded the normal goings-on at PNG Naval Base in Lombrum.

Mr Benjamin was directing his series of questions to the Minister for foreign affairs and Immigration Rimbink Pato during question time in parliament yesterday.

He urged the Minister to give a detailed explanation when the temporary settlement deal of the Asylum seekers will be reviewed.

Mr Pato reassured parliament that it was not the intention of the government to make the detention center in Lombrum naval base a permanent settlement destination for the asylum seekers but a processing center.

He told the house that the asylum processing center deal was intended to be reviewed after 12 months but have been extended for another six months before the review will be undertaken sometime between June or July later this year.

Mr Pato said that the processing center will screen all the asylum seekers to find if they are genuine.