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 News 02.2014


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Source: Radio New Dawn on Bougainville

By Alex Munme

CONTINIOUS rain and strong winds have caused substantial damage to villages and roads in the Mahari Constituency on Mainland Bougainville.
Former Council of Elders Chairman, Herman Siriva reported the disaster today in Buka.
Mr. Siriva said both trees and coconuts fell on houses and families almost got killed in a village.
He said roads and bridges got washed away and land transport has come to a standstill at this point in time.
He said current bad weather also caused rough seas and boat owners are picking passengers out at sea. Passengers desperate to travel despite the bad weather have to swim off the coast to get on passenger boats which is very risky, he said.
Mr. Siriva is appealing to all land and sea transport owners to wait till the bad weather situation has improved.
He is also appealing to the National Disaster Office to go in and assess the situation.
Meanwhile, Buka is hit by rain and very strong winds tonight and some houses could loose their roofs tonight.The speed could be up to 60 km an Hour.




Source: PNG Attitude

The ‘belkol’ concept & the re-establishment of Panguna mine

“BELKOL is the promise by Bougainville Copper Limited and Papua New Guinea that they will compensate the people of Bougainville for their impact on our society as they mined our land at Panguna,” paramount chief of Piavora, Charles Karoro (pictured) told me.

In Bougainville’s Nasioi society, just like other societies in the Solomon archipelago, conflict is the essence of the people’s way of life; it is intrinsic to the interaction of humans to other people and the environment.
All these behaviours lead to disruption of peace within society, resulting in war, destruction and death.
Before colonisation the Nasioi society was a world governed by clan leadership and power. Laws that existed over the land were supreme and observed by all people, thus our society was largely peaceful with minimal reckless violence against each other.
But at those times of war and death, the Nasioi civilisation had procedures to heal the wounds and divisions in our midst.
“When my clan’s enemy killed one of us,” Karoro explained, “we did an analysis to see who was in the wrong. If our clan was innocent and we had enough warriors, we would retaliate and carry out a punitive raid. People would be killed.
“But if our clan was weak, we would make a gesture for peace to save ourselves and rebuild, with an intention to wage war in the future – by ourselves or in an alliance. The enemy knows that its power is not eternal and he will also have to make peace with us.
“And the beginning of the peace process and compensation is the domang tamiri or belkol as you educated youths are calling it.
“This is the tiny promise that you, as the culprit, will execute to heal the wounds and divisions so we can co-exist peacefully back again.”
To Karoro, the concept applies equally to the Nasioi people and BCL. Bougainville Copper arrived in Bougainville in the 1960s and extracted the people of Bougainville’s wealth to develop PNG who are not relatives of the Nasioi people or the Bougainville people.
“Since BCL and PNG gave us nothing in return for the destruction of our land,” Karoro said, “we went to war with them both. We fought and died and won the war and now we want development on our island to start our journey.
“With the massive destruction of infrastructure by war and civil conflict our Autonomous Bougainville Government sees the Panguna mine as the way forward. But we all know that Panguna mine is where the war came from and killed 20,000 Bougainvilleans from Buin to Buka Island.
“So BCL and PNG have the blood of the 20,000 people on their hands, but since ABG needs BCL then BCL has to right the wrongs starting from domang tamiri.”
Domang tamiri, or belkol, will be a recompense in the form of cash, kind and a feast for the people of Bougainville by BCL, PNG and ABG saying they will pay compensation at a later date.

Source: Post-Courier

Businessman praises O’Neill’s visit to Bougainville

A LAE-based businessman and former contractor to Bougainville Copper Ltd has praised Prime Minister Peter O’Neill for taking that "humble yet very important" trip to Bougainville.
Kandaso Napi, who has a longstanding relationship with the people of Bougainville through his past association with BCL and the Panguna landowners, said the trip not only raised the spirits of the downtrodden people there but united the leadership of Bougainville at all levels.
He commended the four national MPs, the ABG President and his members, local chiefs, former combatants, leaders of the Me’ekamui faction and others for facilitating and making it possible for the Prime Minister’s to visit and meet the people in all three electorates of the region within a truly peaceful atmosphere.
Mr Napi said this country needs visionary leaders like Mr O’Neill who are qualified and experienced in all facets of life, including business, politics and administration but above all, one with a down-to-earth heart for the wellbeing of the people of this country.
He said since Mr O’Neill has the right attributes of a national leader, he has committed himself to raising the living standards of the common people on the ground, particularly those in the remote parts of the country like Bougainville and others in all the four regions.
Mr Napi said Bougainville contributed immensely to the nation’s coffers through the copper mine well before other mineral and petroleum resources were discovered in other parts of PNG.
He said therefore, it’s only fitting that the people of PNG through their National Government show some form of appreciation by providing more financial packages for infrastructure and other socio-economic development projects so that Bougainvilleans may improve their living standards.
Mr Napi said he believes in a united Papua New Guinea in which Bougainville may continue to maintain its special autonomy status and yet share in and benefit from the many resource projects in the country as they deserve to be repaid in whatever form during this time of reconciliation and rebuilding.
He urged the people of Bougainville to maintain national unity at all times and try to reconcile and work together for the common good of Bougainville and the country.  The Engan man who calls himself a Bougainvillean at heart wishes to let critics and others know that he has a very strong spiritual bond with the people of Bougainville.
“Only the domang tamiri will pave the way for BCL and PNG to set their feet on Bougainville,” said Charles Karoro. “BCL can start a physical presence on Bougainville with that simple promise over the shed blood of 20,000 that were sacrifices due to BCL and PNG’s treatment of Bougainville.”



Source: Mekamui News

Meeting with former BCL Mine Manager: Johannes van der Linden and his wife Emmy, Both of them lived on Bougainville for 20 years.
By Daniel Jones

While organising Clive’s film screening in Sydney I got a call from a Mr Johannes van der Linden claiming to be a former BCL mine manager at Panguna. He expressed interest in coming to the film night in Sydney but was worried he might be beaten up by what he suspected was a group of anti mining communist hardliners perhaps. I assured him he would be welcome to attend and would not be abused but he didn’t make it to the film night.


Copper map of Bougainville

I contacted Johannes and suggested a visit, which he accepted, so Clive and I went along to their house in Austinmer. Upon meeting Johannes and his wife Emmy we were shown some of the beautiful carvings and artefacts from Bougainville including a hand-made hard wood dining table with double legs, very nicely made. He believed in the great potential for unique Bougainvillean made furniture with their prized rain forest timbers, something worth involving in their economy and trade links.


Table made in Bougainville

After expressing that our views maybe different Mr van der Linden told me of his work as a BCL mine manager, first in Analytical Services Department then Analytical and Environment Services and later in Corporate Services toward the end. He said he was “one of the first there and one of the last to leave”. He worked with Louis Togovono at the time, a very switched on Bougainvillean man, whom I had become familiar with from online forums. Johannes said “We want to have the same outcome an opportunity for the population to achieve their full potential and sustainable future for the people of Bougainville. We may not agree on how this can be achieved and both points of view should be discussed. I am not representing Rio Tinto, my only interest is in the future of the Bougainvilleans. Louis should play part in this”.
Johannes opinion is that; “for the people of Bougainville to achieve their full potential it is essential to reopen the Panguna mine to provide an income and capital to develop agriculture other local businesses and provide funding for infrastructure health and education. At present 85% of the funds to pay for these service comes from the PNG Government and International aid. Some of the best agricultural land on Bougainville is owned by foreigners. The population of Bougainville increased from 50,000 to 75,000 between 1970 and 1989, now it is 200,000. The people of Bougainville have a great capacity to technical work and the opportunity should be given to further develop this. A significant number of BCL trained tradesmen and professionals are working all over the world because their skills are recognised. All the positive issues instigated by BCL have not been recognized such as the infrastructure such as roads, Arawa town, the training of many young Bougainvilleans, the friendships between the local people and expatriates. Most expatriates which were mostly Australians recognised that the part of the income paid to the PNG Government was inadequate and this would have been renegotiated the year the uprising started. Of course the People of Bougainville, not just the landowners should get the benefits and there should be consensus within the population based on facts to recommence mining”.


Carving from Bougainville

He told me of his work, often but not always with Rio Tinto, from around the world including South Africa, Indonesia and Mongolia, mostly benefiting the mining Industry as a chemical engineer but he also worked at Port Kembla’s Southern Copper, the 200 metre high stack there was demolished only last week. Surprisingly this is where he also worked with Louis Togovono. Mr Van Der Linden supports Louis with admiration of his high standing and capacity for leadership. It was news to us that Louis is the son of Sir Paul Lapun, a Ministerial Member of the House of Assembly (1965) with an extensive political career but was also an early fighting voice against the land and resource theft occurring on their Island. This is evident in the interview documentation with Sir Paul Lapun (1988) provided courtesy of Dr Lasslett on a forum.
Good news as I find Louis certainly expresses intelligent resolve on forums of issues affecting Bougainville, sharing solutions to many economic and environmental problems within Bougainville that don’t necessarily involve mining. Examples include premium coconut oil production and chocolate production facilities. After learning what works and what doesn’t from mega mining projects and turning the other way Louis had thought he had left Rio Tinto only to find out they had bought his current workplace, such is the nature of capitalism. It is fortunate that Mr Togovono has so much knowledge and experience to offer his motherland and peoples in many areas of expertise especially alternatives to large scale mining and directions in agriculture and renewable energy.


Another Carving from Bougainville

In Louis’s own words “Bougainville at present does not have the capacity to deal with mega projects, the politicians there think they do. Maybe they need to go out and get a job overseas and learn how much government effort is required to keep these people in line. I prefer small mines or artisanal mines for starters and build up capacity that way. Better still focus on agriculture and the others renewables. One big hole in the tropics has far reaching consequences due to the wet conditions. It is also my view that some of the public servants and politicians dealing with BCL at the local level are seriously out of their depth. Thats why we have seen a fragmentation rather than a unification of the landowner associations. There some are incisive and divisive characters amongst the local players. And one of the biggest qualification they need is the gift of listening…no just hearing, but actually listening to the little people on the ground”.


Garamunt from Bougainville

Over coffee Johannes admitted that things went wrong with the [mining] environmental issues “that were supposed to flush the tailings out to sea” with which he admitted some responsibility and is concerned to this day about acid mine drainage, which he believed ought to be fixed now regardless of whether the mine re-open’s or not. He said “A best practice of tailings disposal through a pipeline to the sea was constructed in 1988 but not implemented because of the BRA uprising. The acid rock drainage would have been fixed soon as soon it had become apparent”. It was interesting to hear that ASIO had arrested Johannes on his return from Panguna after suspecting he had secret documents on events that had occurred. After pulling apart his belonging‘s and keeping him in custody overnight they found no secret documents.
Along came the social issues and shear injustice that sparked the war. Bougainvillean’s got next to no benefit from the mine on their land. Mr and Mrs Van der Linden as BCL employees recommended the company should have addressed this issue much sooner to prevent the conflict that arose. Had BCL listened and paid attention to Mr Van der Linden, Louis commented, there would have been a different result at Panguna. Emotionally Johannes and Emmy expressed their fondness for Bougainvillean’s. Twenty year relationships that had become like family, they felt sorry for what had resulted from the mining occupation.
As Clive talked with Emmy who spoke of such family and mentioned triplet babies whom one was the namesake of her ‘Emma’. Coincidently Clive knew exactly of the people spoken of and brought the bad news that Emma had died due to the blockade of medical treatment during the crisis. The news was upsetting but a connection had been made again with Bougainvilleans.
Clive lived in the same area where Emmy and Johannes long time Bougainvillean friends lived. James his wife and the triplets are named after the wives of three Managers of Bougainville Copper; Emma, Judith and Beverly.
Johannes said; “James and his family came down from their upper Bovo village to see us of when we were forced to leave Bougainville. We had known each other for 19 years”. As we heard from Clive who knows the family well that James , his wife and the two triplets died most likely from an infectious disease.
Johannes said “If the BRA would not have burned down the Arawa hospital and killed our Bougainvillean Doctor who tried to stop them they would mostly likely be ok”. “James the Medical Doctor and Louis Tagovono ,Sir Paul Lapun son, both started their working lives in the Analytical Services Department and were supported to become Professionals in their own right. Louis worked with me for more than 20 years on Bougainville and for Southern Copper in Port Kembla in Australia. Louis was nominated to take over as Departmental Manager from John in 1988”.
Clive asked Johannes what he thought Rio Tinto ought to do to be invited back to Bougainville. In reply he said “easy they ought to start a foundation to rehabilitate the Panguna site whether mining starts again or not”. He mentioned trying to get BCL interested in a foundation in recent years with Louis’s ideas focused on empowering Bougainvillean people rather than the education assistance hand outs they are doing now. However BCL has zero interest in such a foundation in their game plan, but still the importance of compensation to be addressed remains. The cost according to hydro geologist Dr Gavin Mudd, could go into hundreds of millions to remediate the mine, certainly not out Rio Tinto’s profit margin reaches of over nine billion and within its corporate social responsibility.


Dan & Johannes talking outside his house

On the way out we were shown the garden which hosts a joint nature reserve with the neighbours and respect for nature. They really like the area and Johannes tells me he walks up the escarpment twice a week as he reveals his weight gym. In his eighties he likes to keep fit as he said he had always done including in his time on Bougainville hosting regular aerobics and fitness regimes for workers at the time.
It was good meeting them. As Johannes stressed that in all the documentation of research facts over the years no-one had bothered to come and talk with him. It was a pleasure to talk with Mr and Mrs van der Linden I hope this will not be the last time we talk about Bougainville and help to piece together the history, and of peoples Bougainville experiences both tragic and inspirational to so many and to find a way forward.


Emmy, Clive & Johannes



Source: Post-Courier

UN supports Bougainville groups

TWO Bougainville-based organisations responsible for conducting environmental preservation programs and the development of eco-tourism industry have been chosen as recipients of funds earmarked for developmental assistance and sustainability of their projects. The Paruparu Conservation Group and Rotokas Eco Tourism will receive a total of $US200,000 (K450,000) from the United Nations Development Program’s global environment facility, small grants program .
The grants program is a world wide fund that assists small community based organisations to protect and preserve their natural environment. The Paruparu Conservation Group will receive $US150, 000 over the next three years while $US50,000 will be given to the Rotokas Eco Tourism. The national co-ordinator of the program at the UN Office in Port Moresby, Tamalis Akus, said she was very pleased that funds have been approved for Bougainville.
“The two proposals were the best written proposals we have received,” Ms Akus said, before encouraging other small conservation and environmental groups to enquire about support. The Paruparu Conservation Group will be using this fund to develop and teach sustainable farming methods and develop village level technologies for micro electricity supply.
Their chairman, Charles Mikua, said he was extremely pleased to receive the financial support for this project. “This has taken a long time and a lot of work to receive this funding and we must be sure to use it wisely and carefully,” Mr Mikua said. Rotokas Eco Tourism is currently working to develop and promote ecotourism in the Wakunai and Torokina Districts especially along the Numanuma Peace Trail.
While thanking the UN for their funding assistance, their representative Junias Repiriri said this funding will greatly help them in educating their communities on the benefits associated with the trail. “We are pleased to receive this funding. It will help us work with and educate the community to maximize the benefit and sustainability of ecotourism to communities along the trail.”
Chief Technical Advisor of the UN Development Program in Bougainville, Anthony Agyenta, said he was pleased to have brought this funding to Bougainville. He said the funding enables the UN to partner with communities to undertake environmental work, and communities are expected to provide the same ‘dollar value’ in labour and local effort as the program is providing in funding.
Mr Agyenta emphasised that communities should not be looking to get payouts from this money, but should be working together to maximize the impact that will be reaped from this assistance. Both conservation groups are also thankful for the support and assistance provided by the Autonomous Bougainville Government, especially the newly formed Bougainville Environment Bureau.
Paruparu also has a close partnership with the Bougainville Education Division while Rotokas has already made links with the Bougainville Division of Culture and Tourism. The New Zealand organisation Volunteer Service Abroad will also be assisting the Rotokas by providing a one year volunteer placement to assist with the program.



Source: Bougainville Copper Limited

2013 Preliminary Final Annual Report !



Today Bougainville Copper Limited published today 2013 Preliminary Annual Report.

It comments the company's activities as follows:

The historic visit in January 2014 to previous no‐go areas on mainland Bougainville by PNG
Prime Minister Peter O’Neill, the first by a serving Prime Minister in fifteen years, has
generated a wave of conciliatory sentiment among many stakeholder groupings previously
unwilling to declare an end to long held hostilities.
The Prime Minister visited Buka, Buin, Siwai, Arawa and the Panguna heartland of the
Bougainville independence movement, generally receiving an enthusiastic welcome.
Bougainville Copper Limited is encouraged by this new spirit of engagement, as it enters a
year in which planned reconciliation ceremonies should see it re‐establishing an
administrative presence at Arawa, to launch and manage studies aimed at assessing bio‐
remediation needs, community development programs, social mapping, asset revaluation
and de‐risking.
Positive dialogue between stakeholders including the Autonomous Bougainville
Government (ABG), the National Government of PNG, landowners, Bougainville
communities, ex‐combatants and BCL continues to advance the prospect of re‐opening the
Following the Prime Ministerial visit, ABG President John Momis re‐affirmed the high
priority that the ABG places on a re‐start of operations at Panguna.
The company continues to evaluate the findings of the “2012 Order of Magnitude Study”.  
The emerging results of this study broadly indicate that it would be economically viable to
redevelop the Panguna mine. Further commentary on developments in both the political
and fiscal environment surrounding the project is scheduled for the 2014 Annual General
Meeting in May.
Further studies, including pre‐feasibility and bankable feasibility, will be necessary before
any decision on redevelopment of the Panguna mine can be made. It is not intended to
undertake further major studies until consultations with governments, landowners and
other stakeholders result in broad support for redevelopment.



Source: Radio New Dawn on Bougainville


By Alex Munme

FORMER ABG Member for Atolls and resident of Buka town, Taehu Pais has joined his resident partner and Former Police Officer, Jeffrey Magum on lack of law and order in Buka town.
Mr. Taehu said addressing law and order issues is not ABG or Police responsibility only.
Mr. Taehu said he is backing up Jeffrey Magum on the lawlessness behavior by especially youth in Buka town walking on streets with cans of alcohol in their hands.
He said this is not Police responsibility only but everyone including parents as well to guide the youth to avoid alcohol and marijuana.
Mr. Taehu said some of the leaders who are supposed to be leading by example are the ones promoting the behavior by drinking in public places in town.
He said these youths and those behaving as if there is no law should be apprehended and put behind bars.
Mr. Taehu said everyone has the responsibility to guide us forward and towards referendum and Independence.

Source: Radio New Dawn on Bougainville

By Alex Munme

A Woman leader has expressed concern on the lack of management skills to promote and increase cocoa production which has been badly hit by cocoa pod borer.
Isabel Peta from Buin raised the concern last weekend in Buka.
She said farmers know how to plant and harvest cocoa but lack the knowledge and skills to manage to increase production.
She is appealing to the government for training so that farmers have the management skills to prevent cocoa pod borer.
Mrs. Peta said although DPI has steps to follow as a way to manage cocoa pod borer, there is need for more awareness and training.
She said pruning and fertilizer application are two other areas the farmers need to know.
The Woman leader also challenged the government to fund training to prevent cocoa pod borer and increase cocoa production.


opened cocoa pod

Source: Radio New Dawn on Bougainville

By Aloysius Laukai

The ABG ACTING PRESIDENT, PATRICK NISIRA has joined the many leaders who are opposing the so Called BOUGAINVILLE KINA introduced by self Proclaimed King of PAPAALA, NOAH MUSINGKU.
The Acting President supported the stands made earlier by the Acting Bougainville Chief Administrator, CHRIS SIRIOSI and the finance Minister, ALBERT PUNGHAU.
MR. NISIRA said that there was no such thing as a International Bank of Meekamui operating on Bougainville and this was against the monetary policy of Papua New Guinea of which Bougainville is still part of.
He said that the PNG and the Autonomous Bougainville Governments must work together to put an end to this project which is deceiving the people of Bougainville and PNG.
The scandal created by BVK has forced PRIME MINISTER, PETER O’NEILL to propose the introduction of stringent measures to counter the number of foreigners illegally entering Bougainville.
MR. NISIRA says this move was timely as it will put in place control measures that will help with progress of Bougainville and stop any unwarranted moves to destabilize the ABG’s credibility.

Source: Radio New Dawn on Bougainville

By Aloysius Laukai

Two Royal Australian Navy vessels, HMAS BENALLA and HMAS SHERPPARTON are scheduled to arrive in Bougainville IN TWO DAYS TIME and this is no cause of alarm for Bougainvilleans as they are here at the invitation of the ABG.
These two ships will conduct a hydrographical survey of the waters between Buka island and Torokina in South West Bougainville.
According to the ABG VICE PRESIDENT, PATRICK NISIRA, the presence of the two vessels is part of a major exercise by the Australian Government to dispose all unexploded Bombs and ammunitions from World War Two.
MR. NISIRA says that the Australian Government’s assistance is in response to the ABG’s request from March 2013 to see the complete disposal of these ordinances from the area before referendum.
He said that consultations between the ABG, the Papua New Guinea and Australian governments in June last year resulted in the commencement of Operation Render Safe in October of the same year with the Australian Defence Force an aerial survey of the chartered waters.
A team from the Australian Defence Force has already visited the site last year to establish logistic and support requirements for the operation.
The Australian Navy’s visit will be the third phase of the preliminary preparations leading to the actual removal and disposal of unexploded ordinances which will begin in October this year.
MR. NISIRA said that the ship’s will make sure the route used on Operation Render Safe is cleared for moving of supplies, equipments and personnel between Buka and Torokina.
The two ships will chart the depth of the water, mark any obstructions and determine suitable anchorage points for ships involved in the operation.
He said that the data gathered from this survey will be shared with the PNG MARITIME SAFETY AUTHORITY and the ABG to provide accurate charts of our waters and ensure the safety of passenger and cargo vessels sailing these waters.

Source: Radio New Dawn on Bougainville


By Alex Munme

AN Invitation is now with the Bougainville Football (Soccer) Association to send three or four Soccer Divisions to participate at the Cairns Soccer Carnival in Australia.
This carnival is scheduled for September, 2014 and will include the under eight, 10 and 12 divisions.
Bougainville Soccer Chief Executive Officer, Chris Nawa said they are requesting to include the under 13 division as well.
Mr. Nawa is appealing to all Member Associations to involve school students ranging from eight years to 20 years old to play in their respective divisions as their development squads.
He said during term one break a soccer festival will be held in each association to pick grand finalists and runner ups to play for the Cup Challenge.
The Cup Challenge will be held during the second term break in July, 2014 in Arawa, Central Bougainville Region.
After this Cup challenge, Bougainville Football (Soccer) Association will send the three or four divisions to take part in the Cairns Carnival.



Source: Radio New Dawn pon Bougainville

By Aloysius Laukai

Two Environment groups in Central Bougainville will receive FOUR HUNDRED FIFTY THOUSAND KINA from the United Nations Development Program, Global Development Facility, Small Grants Program.
The GEF SGP is a world wide fund that assists small community based organizations to protect and preserve the Natural environment.
The Paruparu Conservation Group will receive US DOLLAR ONE HUNDRED FIFTY THOUSAND  OVER THE NEXT THREE YEARS TO DEVELOP AND TEACH SUSTAINABLE FARMING METHODS AND Develop village level technologies for Micro Electricity Supply.
And the other beneficiary is the ROTOKAS ECO TOURISM GROUP who will get the remaining funds for working to develop Eco Tourism in the Wakunai and Torokina areas along the NumaNuma Track which is a World War 2 Track.
Both the Conservation groups were very thankful for the support and assistance provided under the UNDP Small Grants Program.
Leader of the Paru Paru group, CHARLES MIKUA and JUNIAS REPIRIRI from the Rotokas Eco Tourism group said that they were pleased to receive this funding and this will surely assist them in educating their communities on sustaining their projects into the future.
Meanwhile the UNDP HEAD on Bougainville, ANTHONY AGYENTA  said that he was pleased to bring this money to Bougainville to make sure UNDP Partner with communities to undertake environment work.
The MOU was signed by the UN Country Representative, ROY TRIVEDY who returned to Port Moresby this afternoon.

ROY TRIVEDY pictured signing the MOU in Buka today

Source: Radio New Dawn pon Bougainville

By Aloysius Laukai

A former Boss of Education division on Bougainville and elder, TONY TSORA today called on the ABG especially Law and Justice sector to control what he termed as Street Invaders that have taken over the streets of Buka, Kokopau and other Towns and Government centres throughout Bougainville.
He said that the sale of illicit drugs including liquor must be controlled by Authorities so that the younger generation is not led to believe that what that is currently happening becomes a norm for Bougainville society.
MR. TSORA said that Bougainville Liquor Licensing Board and the ABG must make sure that policies are in placed to control this illicit trade from creating a bad image for Bougainville.
He said that the sign of people drinking at will and into the early hours of the morning is not good for Bougainville’s future.
MR. TSORA said that he was concerned if these youths are consuming these illicit drugs what will be the result of the referendum if all these drunkards voted in the coming referendum that will decide the future of Bougainville.

Source: Radio New Dawn pon Bougainville

By Aloysius Laukai

The former Education CEO, TONY TSORA today questioned why ABG leadership were not taking leadership roles in their Constituencies.
MR. TSORA told NEW DAWN FM that members were not having any development plans and were just using their Electoral Support funds for their personal use.
He said this was evident as nothing tangible has come out of these funds over the last four years.
MR. TSORA said that he was concerned that certain members of the ABG were really working with the National members and developing community projects whilst other members are not considered at all.
He said that funds must be distributed fairly to all corners of the region.
MR. TSORA also called on the Chief Administrator to investigate why some areas were developing whilst others are been left behind.

Source: Radio New Dawn pon Bougainville

By Alex Munme

THE Bougainville Football (Soccer) Association is planning to stage a Soccer Club Championship next month in Buin, South Bougainville Region.
Bougainville Soccer Chief Executive Office, Chris Nawa reveled this yesterday in Buka.
The Championship is for all Grand finalists and Runner ups throughout the region to participate and identify who is the king of Soccer in the region.
Mr. Nawa said all Twenty six Member associations are required to pay a participating fee of K500 and K100 each player registration fee. These fees can be deposited into Bougainville Soccer BSP Account Number 1000688514.
Each association is asked to field men’s and women’s teams including runner ups totaling to four teams with up to 20 players each.

Source: Radio New Dawn pon Bougainville

By Aloysius Laukai
Meanwhile Police in Buin, South Bougainville are controlling the level of crime in South Bougainville.
Buin Police Commander, SENIOR SERGENT JOHN POPUI told New Dawn FM at the weekend that Police are doing their best to minimize trouble in South Bougainville.
He said that Police were working with communities to make sure issues concerning Law and order are addressed.
JOHN POPUI said that Police in Buin are working with South Bougainville Veterans Association to get rid of homebrew making equipments and arrest those homebrew brewers in the communities.
He said that because many law breakers are ex combatants themselves, they use the association to get these people to Police.
SERGENT POPUI also wanted Police housing to be improved so that his Police Officers can have good accommodation and provide better service to the communities.
New Dawn FM managed to visit some new Police Houses being built in Buin town.


Source: Radio New Dawn pon Bougainville

BY Alex Munme

THE Bougainville Police Service has been challenged to step up in their operations and performance in dealing with law and order in Buka town and the communities.
Former Police Officer and now Businessman, Jeffrey Magum expressed the concern over the weekend.
Mr. Magum said Police have gone into hiding and need to step up in their operations to deal with law and order issues on Bougainville.
He said the consumption of homebrew has gone out of control in our communities and in Buka town.
He said Police sees young people consuming alcohol in Public places like on the streets of Buka town which is and offence and does nothing to arrest these law breakers.
Mr. Magum said in his time he would stop and deal with these basic law and order issues in the communities.
He said there has been a lot of rowdy situations by drunkards and is questioning Police presence in these situations in Buka town.
Mr. Magum said if these smaller issues are not addressed now they will build up to bigger issues in the future.
He also appealed to the government regarding the many small liquor outlets just steps from each other that contribute to the alcohol issues in Buka and Kokopau towns.

Source: Radio New Dawn pon Bougainville

By Aloysius Laukai

The United Nations resident representative for Papua New Guinea ROY TRIVEDY arrived in Buka this morning for a two- day visit of Buka.
This is his first visit to Bougainville after taking office from the former DAVID McLAHAN KARR who has visited Bougainville several times the most outstanding was his involvement in the walk on the famous World War 2 NUMANUMA TRACK to Torokina.
The 3 days walk was promoted to start up Tourism on this track and to support youths establish themselves on this track.
The MOU signing is one of the projects DAVID and Anthony Agyenta has been working on in the past years to source funding for Tourism and Environmental Conservation.
After arriving in Buka, MR. TRIVEDY met the ABG Chief Administrator, Bougainville Administration CEO’s visited the ABG Vice President, PATRICK NISIRA the Speaker of the ABG House of Representatives and the Bougainville Police.
He will meet the Bougainville Press in the morning before returning to Port Moresby after lunch tomorrow.




Source: EMTV




Bougainville is still under the jurisdiction of the Papua New Guinea Government, and doesn’t have any currency of its own, except the kina and toea.
Finance, Treasury and Planning Minister, Albert Punghau, says the Autonomous Bougainville Government will not sanction the use of this so called Bougainville kina.
This is in breach of the country’s laws and monetary policies.
Speaking from Buka this afternoon, Mr Punghau clarified that the ABG doesn’t recognize the so called Bougainville kina.
Despite the autonomous arrangement, the Bougainville Constitution and Peace Agreement Bougainville, doesn’t allow any new currency except the PNG Kina as legal tender.
The statement was made following the recent arrest of an American national Barry Keith Webb, at Jackson’s Airport, with a briefcase filled with the phony currency of K1.6 million Bougainville.
Mr Punghau revealed that the currency is sponsored by illusive money scam boss and self-proclaimed king Noah Misingku’s U-Vistract organization, under its subsidiary the International Bank of Mekamui.
With reports of the so called currency in circulation in parts of South Bougainville, Mr Punghau made it clear, that it is valueless.
Those using it must stop.
The ABG has condemned Mr Keith’s actions and he should face the full force of the National laws.
Reports from sources within Noah Misingku’s camp in Tonu revealed that U-Vistract has distanced itself from the scandal, saying they were unaware of Mr. Keith’s illegal entry into the country.




Source: ABC Radio Australia - Pacific Beat

Bougainville travel permission requirement won't dent tourism

The man in charge of promoting tourism in the Papua New Guinea island of Bougainville doesn't think new restrictions on visitors will affect the number of tourists.
A recent incident in which an American man was caught trying to smuggle currency for a fictitious country into the island has promoted prime Minister Peter O'Neill to announce that foreigners wanting to go there must get clearance from both the national government and the Autonomous Bougainville Government.
But Lawrence Bellah, head of the Bougainville Tourist Office in Buka, tells Bruce Hill that should not put off genuine tourists, who he says are starting to visit the island in greater numbers.

Presenter: Bruce Hill
Speakers: Lawrence Bellah, Bougainville Tourist Office




Source: Post-Courier

Lera pays school fees

BOUGAINVILLE Regional MP Joe Lera has allocated more than K648,000 towards subsidising school fees for Bougainvillean students attending various educational institutions in the country. The Regional MP’s first secretary, Simon Koraikove, said this funding will be paid to those who had applied for school fee assistances. “We had received over 11,000 applications for school fee assistance, however the Regional MP still assisted in paying their fees,” Mr Koraikove said.
He said these fees will be paid directly to the accounts of the institutions that the students will be attending. “We are not going to pay directly to the parents unless the parents have paid the full amount then the Regional MP will reimburse them to make it fair,” he said. According to Mr Koraikove, K61,800 will be paid to UPNG, K35,200 to Divine Word University, K34,775 to University of Technology, K23,109 to University of Goroka and K4000 to Vudal University.
Kabaleo Teachers College will receive K95,580 while K95, 000 will be deposited into the account of the Sonoma Adventist Teachers College. The fees will also be deposited into the accounts of other universities, teachers colleges and other tertiary institutions in the country. Mr Koraikove said the Regional MP has allocated this large sum of money towards subsidizing the students’ fees after seeing the importance that their education will lead to positive developments taking place in Bougainville in future.
“The whole idea is for them to go study and come back to develop Bougainville. At the moment the officers are working day and night to ensure that all these monies should be deposited into the respective schools accounts.” He said the Regional MP cannot accept any more applications for school fee assistances for this year. Meanwhile, Mr Koraikove has clarified that the Regional MP and his officers are not responsible for selecting students to undergo studies in various institutions both within the country and abroad.
“The Office of the Regional MP does not select students for trainings. “We only give application forms to interested students and later forward their applications to the relevant schools for selection.” This clarification now puts to rest complaints that some people have been raising, claiming that Mr Lera’s officers were biased in the selection of students.



Source: Bougainville24

Landowners lead the way in Panguna discussions

Bougainville Copper Limited (BCL) would only consider a return to operations at Panguna with the full support of customary landowners in the mine affected regions and the Autonomous Bougainville Government (ABG).
BCL believes it has strengthened its relationship with landowners through regular meetings and a shared responsibility as part of the Joint Panguna Negotiation Coordination Committee (JPNCC).
The JPNCC consists of representatives from landowners, ABG, Government of Papua New Guinea and BCL and meets approximately every six weeks. The last meeting was on Wednesday 22 January in Port Moresby
The terms of reference for the JPNCC includes environmental, social and economic baseline studies, as well as the vital customary process of bel kol.
The environmental baseline study has tremendous importance as it will help determine future implementation of environmental programs.
The current representatives of the mine affected landowners on the JPNCC are Theresa Jaintong, Lawrence Daveona and Bernadine Kiraa.
Throughout its history BCL has always strived for best practice in the resource industry.
Before the establishment of the Panguna mine, BCL reached the requisite agreement with the Government of PNG, however there was no ABG or landowners group to negotiate with at that time.
In the contemporary environment the landowners are, rightly, at the front and centre of discussions on a potential return to operations at Panguna.



Source: Papua New Guinea Mine Watch

ABG Officials racist online rant
by ramunickel

It has been a tough year for the Autonomous Bougainville Government, as their castle made of sand gradually slips into the sea. The ‘world first’ legislation they tried to sneak through parliament, was shown to be a sham. And up in Panguna, landowners, ex-combatants, and Mekamui reps, have called President Momis out on his huge lie, that 97% of landowners support BCL’s return.
‘Better the devil you know’ claims Momis… didn’t the people sacrifice to kick the devils out?
But it appears all of this has become too much for one ABG Mining Department official, Simon Jaintong. Jaintong is blaming all the government’s woes on one ‘agitator’, the respected UK academic, Dr Kristian Lasslett, who has published widely on Rio Tinto’s criminality, and is considered a leading authority on corporate crime.
In an online tirade, Jaintong used every trick on the book to deflect his own government’s shortcomings onto Dr Lasslett. Jaintong slams Lasslett as a ‘white Australian’. He then claims: ‘If you feel so high and mighty about bringing BCL to justice why don’t you take it up in your own backyard (Australia) or in your own forum. I Hear the abos* are getting ripped off by the mining cos too!’.
Jaintong continued the tirade by suggesting Dr Lasslett is on the payroll of some unknown actor trying to destabilise Bougainville: ‘Are you getting paid to poke your nose into our affair? Your laudable beef with Mining Companies - is it a front?’.
He then issues a contradictory warning, ‘The critical mass is here on the ground without access to your biased views. These are the people I deal with. The dissenting voices you speak of are of those who either have preconceived ideas about mining, or are not well informed at all. Our biggest failure in the ABG is that we are not reaching the right people with the correct information thats why you still have a following’.
Jaintong concludes by blaming PNG Mine Watch (this blog) on Dr Lasslett. Sorry Simon that is not the case. This blog is entirely independent of any academic or commentator and most of what we publish comes from the people you claim are being led astray by some outsider - they are the ones doing the leading.
Its time for the ABG to stop the blame game, pinning all its woes to those outside forces evidently ‘sticking their nose in’. When the President Momis and the ABG sold Bougainville down the river to Rio Tinto, that’s when they lost their legitimacy in the eyes of the people who fought to make the ABG what it is today.
Come down and listen to the village people. They will tell you their feelings. They are not stupid and don’t need education. It is ABG officials like Jaintong, which needs some education and there are plenty of teachers up at Panguna ready to tutor them.

* ‘Abos’ is a racist term used in Australia to ridicule indigenous people.




Source: EMTV


Bougainville leaders are being urged to work together to rebuild the island province.
This comes after the first lot of the K500 million allocated for infrastructure funds was only being administered by the Autonomous Bougainville Government and not in consultation with National Government leaders from the province.
Provincial Governor Joe Lera says that issue has now been resolved and all leaders are now ready to work together.
It’s been over two decades since Bougainville fell from glory. The Island was one of the most well developed provinces in the country.
But the slow rebuilding process has finally begun.
It has started with the people themselves and their desire for peace and getting on with their lives in general.
The recent reconciliation with the National government and the ABG government has been a major boost for the people of Bougainville.
The Prime Minister’s visit to the island nation gave renewed confidence.
Regional Governor, Joe Lera, has allowed his people to decide on priority projects.
The Ramason area of North Bougainville is the site of the proposed hydro power plant.
More high impact projects are expected to be open including the Aropa airport in three months’ time.



Source: PNG Attitude

Bougainville after O’Neill: greater hope & a feeling of moving forward

An entry in The Crocodile Prize
PNG Chamber of Mines & Petroleum
Award for Essays & Journalism

Peter O'Neill on BougainvilleAFTER nine years another Papua New Guinean leader, prime minister Peter O’Neill, has set foot on the Solomon Island of Bougainville to assure the people that his country and government are behind them, like a father guiding every economic and political step.
On 15 June 2005, the day the Autonomous Bougainville Government (ABG) was inaugurated on the lawns of Hahela Primary School, Bougainvilleans were assured by then prime minister Sir Michael Somare of the continuous contribution and assistance of the Papua New Guinea Government.
In January 2014, Peter O’Neill was not a mile away from where Sir Michael stood in 2005. Mr O’Neill told Bougainvilleans that PNG is there for them and that it is wanting to see the referendum on independence.
Since 2005 the ABG had talked about ‘impact’ projects to boost the Bougainville economy as it prepared for said referendum, which must be held between 2015 and 2020. At this time, the Bougainville people will decide their political future - whether to remain integrated within PNG or build their own well-defined nation in the Northern Solomon archipelago and be free from exploitation, indoctrination and genocide.
Arawa saw a sudden facelift for the PNG leader’s three-hour visit. PNG Pawa’s electricity supply that goes on-and-off every week rolled out electrical current without hindrance. The litter-soiled streets were slate clean and without blemish. The colony of tall and swaying elephant grass along the banks of the Bovong and Tupukas rivers disappeared. Potholes disappeared and driving was smooth for days afterwards as we awaited some irate weathering.
On the afternoon of 29 January, when Peter O’Neill reached a shining and smiling Arawa from Panguna, he was given a chieftain’s welcome by a few cultural groups from central Bougainville.
This was a gesture of hospitality from hearts and minds that long to see change on Bougainville.


Mr O’Neill was submerged in a sea of black people lost in a confusion of high expectations of political, social and economic change and the sudden rebirth of a post crisis cash economy ridden with inequality and inequity.
The so-called goodwill visit by the PNG leader reiterated impact projects like the sealing of the Kokopau-Buin coastal trunk road, the Arawa sewage and water project, rebuilding the torched Arawa General Hospital, the K500,000 Panguna primary school project, reopening a postal service in Arawa, establishing an insurance service in Bougainville, reopening Aropa International airport and building a Bougainville Teachers College in Buin.
Revival of postal services and the reopening of Aropa airport are being fast tracked and these services could trigger progress on the island and a further diminution in the relevance of the Meekamui factions.
To many Bougainvilleans these would be positive initiatives for the ABG and the four Bougainville parliamentarians in Port Moresby; closing their ears to opportunists and implementing change to appease the peoples’ broken hearts.
But as Bougainvilleans understand, politicians have the syndrome of personal prestige building and not so much Bougainville-building, as can be seen in the regional PNG parliamentarian, Joe Lera.
To many young Bougainvilleans, Bougainville is still lacking a nation builder who can unite the few figures who hold the people to ransom with their dirty politics and scams.
Peter O’Neill said that Bougainville must unite under the only legitimate government, the Autonomous Bougainville Government. And this is a challenge to the leadership.
Positive change on Bougainville can only be influenced by the political unity of the Bougainville leadership and not by competition about who is delivering more funding to the electorates or more projects to the Councils of Elders.
The O’Neill tour did bring some justice and peace in the midst of political differences. People now wait to see the implementation of the major projects.
Furthermore, a degree of understanding between the people and the leadership was created and there is a high probability that Bougainville will move on.
With the awaited referendum on Independence in sight, the people need to see major positive changes generated by the announced projects, for these will be the stepping stone for the positive outcome in the referendum that even outsiders feel will be a vote for Independence.




Source: Radio New Dawn on Bougainville

By Aloysius Laukai in Arawa

The former ARAWA GENERAL HOSPITAL which was reduced to near ashes during the Bougainville conflict is slowly being rebuilt to meet the Health Service need of the people of Central and South Bougainville who have been struggling to Buka with their sick for more than twenty years.
The only Doctor who is working at the ARAWA HEALTH CENTRE, DR.JOE VILOSI told New Dawn FM today that the Health Centre was now seen about 90 patients a day and the number is increasing since he moved to Arawa five months ago.
DR. VILOSI said that they are now carrying some minor operations at the ARAWA HEALTH CENTRE and this has cut the travelling time for patients who used to go all the way to Buka for Emergencies.
He said that many deaths have occurred during those times when the patients had to travel for more than four hours and sometimes whilst waiting for boats on the Kokopau side.
DR. VILOSI said that the biggest problem he is facing at the moment is having the access to funds that are available when needed.
He said he is doing alot of awareness in the Communities and Schools and also need a multimedia projector to make his work much easier.
Dr. Vilosi has thanked the Minister for Communications, JIMMY MIRINGTORO for supporting the Arawa Health Centre and funding the renovations of Doctor’s and Nurses houses in Arawa.

Source: ABC Radio Australia - Pacific Beat

Texan tourist says Bougainville offers a different experience

A campaign to promote tourism to the Papua New Guinea Island of Bougainville may be starting to attract visitors.
Texan tourist says Bougainville offers a different experience
When Pacific Beat contacted the Bougainville Tourism Office to ask how things were going, we were proudly told that a tourist from the United States was right there in the building getting some advice.
His name is Todd Mark, from Houston, Texas, and I asked him how much he knew about Bougainville before arriving.

Presenter: Bruce Hill Speakers: Todd Mark, Texan tourist

  Listen here !  

Source: Prime Minister of Australia

Joint Statement by Prime Minister Abbott & Prime Minister Key

Australia and New Zealand are key partners in supporting the Bougainville Peace Agreement, including assisting Papua New Guinea and the Autonomous Bougainville Government to ensure the referendum on independence takes place peacefully. This year we will cooperate on an operation to reduce the threat of unexploded ordnance in Bougainville.
The Prime Ministers discussed issues likely to be considered at the Pacific Islands Forum in Palau later this year. Australia and New Zealand broadly support the ambitious vision put forward in the recent review of the Pacific Plan, including a sharper focus on key regional issues requiring direction from Leaders.
The Prime Ministers welcomed the substantial progress towards the timely conclusion of the PACER Plus negotiations, as well as other initiatives that will enhance regional integration and lead to greater economic prosperity in the Pacific.



Source: The National

District signs training deal with IPA

 THE Bana district administration of South Bougainville, in the Autonomous Region of Bougainville, will now be able to receive training for its public servants.
That has been made possible following a recent signing of a training agreement between the PNG Institute of Public Administration (PNGIPA) – school of government, and the Autonomous Bougainville Government on behalf of the district administration
The total cost for the training is K288,780 for 10 courses which will run for a year.
PNGIPA deputy director Russell Purai said there was a tremendous advantage and value the training delivery would bring to the district and the province. Purai said the training would be workplace-oriented.
“This is in response to the government’s concern about the ineffectiveness of public service, which as a result, goods and services do not reach the people,” he said.
“We believe this is the way forward to achieving an effective public service workforce. It is the kind of training we should be developing and offering to our public service in the country.”
Bougainville deputy administrator operations Herbert Kimai said Bougainville was in a serious situation in terms of human capacity development and this would train the public servants to deal with autonomy and other issues.



Source: Post-Courier

Illegal currency part of U-Vistract fraud

BOUGAINVILLE’S chief administrator Chris Siriosi says the 1.6 million in illegal currency seized last week in Port Moresby was a fraud.
In a hard-hitting statement yesterday, Mr Siriosi said the Autonomous Bougainville Government’s position was very clear.
"The ABG’s position is absolutely clear. There is no such thing as either the ‘Bougainville kina’ or the ‘Central Bank of Bougainville’," he said.


"The Bougainville Peace Agreement and the PNG Constitution give power over both currency to the Central Bank and the national Government.
"The ABG has absolutely no authority over such matters,"  he said. "The Bougainville kina is just another part of Musingku’s fraud.
"The ABG fears that he now plans to make his promised payouts using this non-existent currency. One concern is that Musingku’s false banknotes will flood rural areas.
"The result could be serious losses for unwary businesses. That could cause confusion and conflict."



Mr Siriosi said the purported Bougainville kina and the central bank of Bougainville were both part of the ongoing fraudulent scheme called U-Vistract.
Since 1997, it had been operated by Noah Musingku, a Bougainvillean who is based at Tonu, in his home area of Siwai.
Mr Siriosi (pictured below) said since 2004 he has been calling himself King David Pei, supposedly the king of the Kingdom of Papaala, which he claims to be Bougainville’s government.
He said said there were no monarchies in the custom of Bougainville and that Papaala "is nothing more than a giaman kingdom, existing only in Musingku’s apparently very disturbed brain".



"Musingku’s government has no authority of any kind in Bougainville. It’s just a fraud".
"From about 1998, Musingku based U-Vistract in Port Moresby. He promised 100 per cent interest per month on investments with U-Vistract.
"But that high interest rate actually went only to a lucky few, which encouraged many other people to invest.
"Of course, most investors never received anything. His few payouts dried up by about 2000.
"But he kept claiming he would pay everything he had promised.
"When Government authorities took action against him in the early 2000s Musingku fled to Bougainville. At first he hid in Francis Ona’s Guava Village in what was then the ‘no-go-zone’ in Central Bougainville.
He persuaded Ona to invest gold then being mined by many of his followers. In late 2004, when Ona realised that he was a fraud, Musingku fled again, this time to his home area of Siwai.
"Since then Musingku has continued to promise great payouts. Recent lies have included stories that a UN organisation, the International Organisation of Economic Development (IOED), has recognised Musingku’s Kingdom. But in fact the IOED does not exist. It too is a fraud."

Source: Bougainville24

Highway feels full force of Mother Nature
By Tevu Tenasi



The Rotaovei Bridge, completed around a year ago, has collapsed in Central Bougainville.
The bridge was number 12 in the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) project to build bridges at key river crossings to fully connect the Arawa to Buka Highway.
Since it was built the Arawa to Buka Highway has been one of the busiest roads in the mainland of Bougainville.
The main highway is crucial for the delivery goods and services to people throughout Bougainville.
Like many other roads in the autonomous region, the poor condition of the highway can have a large effect on the day to day provision of services. Upgrades and short-term maintenance has been an on-going activity.
Bougainville has many rivers, which are hazard to most motor vehicle owners and drivers. People will sometimes take a big risk crossing rivers in a vehicle where there is no bridge.


Rotaovei Bridge under construction.

It was great relief to Bougainvilleans to see JICA assist with the big infrastructural step of the construction of a number of bridges the North and Central Regions.
Unfortunately, just a year after the completion of the project, flooding rivers caused damage to one of the bridges and others are now seen as being at risk of washed away.
This has created an issue to those nearby villages who had come to rely on the bridge.
Children are now at risk as they used the bridge as a crossing to the nearby Kekesu Primary School and also the Health Centre, which is opposite.



Source: Post-Courier

Bougainville villagers dance for water

BOYS from Pipipaia in Wakunai donning their sacred Upes sit on top of their elders’ shoulders to celebrate the opening of a water and sanitation project initiated by World Vision at Itae Primary School. After this dance they ran off to their jungle hideouts.  Picture: JACOB IENU

World Vision helps Bougainville villages

VILLAGERS in the Asogoro area of Rau constituency in the Wakunai District of Central Bougainville now have access to clean water for drinking and cooking.
This was made possible by World Vision, which supplied 17 water tanks to villages in the Pipipaia community.
This project is part of World Vision’s water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) project that the organisation is implementing in five communities in Central Bougainville, and is in line with its goal of improving access to safe water and sanitation and improving hygiene behavior in these five communities.
Apart from the supply of tanks, World Vision also gave materials to construct 53 ventilated improvement pit (VIP) toilets in the Asogoro area.
The WASH project, which was funded by New Zealand-based Gisborne Trust organisation, was launched on Wednesday at Itae Primary School by World Vision country director Curt von Boguslawski and witnessed by acting ABG President Patrick Nisira, World Vision Pacific team leader Myles Harrison, Gisborne Trust, senior World Vision representatives and the Asogoro villagers.
Speaking before the launching, Mr Boguslawski said he hopes that this project will bring positive changes to the communities.
He reminded the Asogoro people that this project was owned by them and not World Vision and it had come about following numerous pleas from their leaders.
Mr Boguslawski said World Vision was only partnering with them to have this project implemented in their area.
He called on the people to understand the responsibilities that come with this project.
Mr Nisira echoed Mr Boguslawski’s sentiments, saying the  project will bring benefits to the lives of the Asogoro people and thanked World Vision and those who had contributed to the successful implementation of the project.
He also thanked Gisborne Trust for financing such projects in Bougainville and appealed to the people to take ownership and look after the project.
Mr Nisira revealed that the ABG has allocated a large amount of funding towards improving water and sanitation projects in Bougainville and it was now up to ABG administration to implement this program.
Vice chairman of Rau Council of Elders, Thomas Kasi and village chief Amos Vokivate thanked World Vision and the financiers of the program for providing the communities with water tanks.
They said this project will have a great impact in their lives.
Chief Kasi was proud of the launching, as he was responsible for pleading with with the NGO to implement the project in his area.
Mr Kasi called on World Vision and ABG to implement similar projects in other parts of Wakunai so that people in his district can have access to clean water for drinking and cooking.
Asogoro women’s representative, Nancy Retoviri said the project will have a great impact in their lives.



Source: Radio New Dawn on Bougainville

PUNGHAU Comments on Musingku’s Currency
Anthony Kaybing

The Autonomous Bougainville Government will not sanction the use of the so called Bougainville Kina (BVK) nor does it recognize it as legal tender in Bougainville.
The ABG’s Minister for Finance Albert Punghau made this statement following the apprehension of an American national at the Jackson’s Airport with a brief case filled with the phony currency amounting to BVK1.6 last week.
The currency is sponsored by illusive money scam boss and self-proclaimed king Noah Misingku’s U-Vistract organization under itssubsidiary the International Bank of Mekamui.
Mr Punghau said the ABG does not and will not condone the actions of the Mekamui Faction headed by U-Vistract.
“Bougainville is still under the jurisdiction of the PNG Government and the BVK is in breach of the country’s laws and monetary policies” Mr Punghau said.
He said that despite Bougainville’s autonomous arrangement, under the Bougainville Peace Agreement Bougainville cannot have its own currency and must still use the PNG Kina as legal tender.
With reports of the BVK already in circulation in parts of South Bougainville, Mr Punghau made it clear that the currency has no value as it is not recognized by the ABG and PNG Government.
He explained that in any country only a Central Bank has the authority to mint a country’s currency under the backing of their Governments.
Mr Punghau further explained that until such time as Bougainvilleans decide to become independent through the referendum then can Bougainville be granted the right to mint its own currency and formulate its own monetary policies.
“Right now the legal tender in Bougainville is the PNG Kina and nothing else,” he said.
He said Bougainvilleans who are using the BVK must refrain from doing so as business houses in Bougainville will not accept it following the advice of the PNG Central Bank that denounced the use of the currency last year.
He added that in the case of the American national, Barry Keith would face the full brunt of PNG’s migratory laws as well as having to face other charges on violating the country’s monetary policies.
Reports from sources within Noah Misingku’s camp in Tonu, say that U-Vistract has distanced itself from the scandal saying they were unaware of Mr Keith’s illegal entry into the country.


Pictured is AKA KING PEI (ii) Picture at his King's Palace, Tonu City by Aloysius Laukai



Source: The National

ABG rejects Bougainville kina as legal tender

THE Autonomous Bougainville Government will not sanction the use of the “Bougainville kina” nor will it recognise it as legal tender, Finance Minister Albert Punghau says.
He made the comment following the arrest of an American national in Port Moresby who was caught at Jackson Airport with a briefcase containing fake currency amounting to BK1.6 million. The currency is sponsored by money scam boss and self-proclaimed king Noah Misingku’s U-Vistract organisation under its subsidiary the International Bank of Me’ekamui.
Punghau said the ABG would not condone the actions of the Me’ekamui Faction headed by U-Vistract.
“Bougainville is still under the jurisdiction of the PNG Government and the fake currency is in breach of the country’s laws and monetary policies” Punghau said.
 He said under the peace agreement, Bougainville could not have its own currency and must still use the Kina as legal tender.
Punghau said the fake currency was of no value as it was not recognised by ABG and the Government.

Source: The National

PM: Illegal money carrier will be prosecuted here

PRIME Minister Peter O’Neill has assured citizens that the American citizen caught bringing in illegal money into the country will be dealt with according to the laws of the country.
“We understand now it was an American citizen who travelled through Philippines to be here, and of course he brought it in illegally,” he said.
“Those funds have got no legal standing in PNG and as such no legal standing in Bougainville.
“It is printed to satisfy a self-proclaimed king that is locked up somewhere in Siwai.”
O’Neill said the Customs Commissioner had issued a statement saying that he would prosecute the matter in court.
“The American citizen has been arrested, he will appear before the courts and certainly, he will be tried according to our laws,” he said.
O’Neill said the incident highlighted the need for the Government to be more involved in Bougainville.
“We have seen from past experiences that there has been a lot of fly-in fly-out businessmen and women who are after quick earning and getting into Bougainville and misleading our people,” he said.
Barry Keith Webb, an American citizen, was caught by Customs officials having in his possession an illegal currency totalling K1.6 million of the Central Bank of Bougainville, Kingdom of Papaala.
He arrived in Port Moresby at around 5am last Saturday on an Air Nuigini flight from Manilla.
He was carrying a briefcase full of this illegal notes.
He was detained for questioning after an X-ray scan on the case revealed it contained what appeared to be a huge amount of cash. He is now locked at the Boroko police station.

Source: Bougainville24

Only mine can drive autonomy – Momis

President of the Autonomous Bougainville Government (ABG), Dr John Momis, has said that the future autonomy of Bougainville is dependent on an operational Panguna mine.
Dr Momis stated that the ABG does not have revenue to be self-sufficient and there other local industries are not yet strong enough to drive Bougainville forward.
“It is my view that without the mine it will be nigh impossible to generate enough revenue to run the autonomous government,” Dr Momis told Radio New Zealand International.
“It is just not possible. Even with the all the help from the national government, you can’t run the autonomous government with the budgetary allocation we get.”
“We are not attracting a lot of investment in agriculture and fisheries, whereas the mine will generate a lot of revenue.”
“It will be under our own mining law and our own policy.”
Though grateful for the international assistance Bougainville receives for small scale projects, Dr Momis wants major improvements that will require larger investment.
“The biggest help is from Japan – 15 bridges built – by the way one of them was washed out the other night – apart from that we don’t have much,” Dr Momis continued.
“We still have rule of law problems, you know law and order. We have a police force that is not strong enough, lacks capacity.”
“We have a real problem with our police, much as we are receiving help from New Zealand, it is just not happening quickly.”
“We need big funds. That is why I am saying unless we have the mine open we will be moving at a snail’s pace.”
Discussions around a future Panguna mine are currently being undertaken by the Joint Panguna Negotiation Coordination Committee, which is comprised of mine-affected landowners, the ABG, Government of PNG and Bougainville Copper Limited.




Economic Update
Papua New Guinea extends olive branch to Bougainville

A landmark visit in January by Papua New Guinea’s Prime Minister, Peter O’Neill, to the semi-autonomous island province of Bougainville, has paved the way for reconciliation and renewed commercial interest in the region.
Bougainville’s name remains synonymous with the controversial Panguna Copper Mine, which closed in 1989, after protests over environmental damage and royalty distributions escalated into a decade-long civil war between Papua New Guinea (PNG) and the island.
Owned by Bougainville Copper Limited (BCL), whose largest shareholder is Rio Tinto, Panguna was the world’s largest open air copper mine in its heyday, making the island one of PNG’s most advanced provinces. Yet its autonomy and distance from the mainland has led to Bougainville capturing little, if any, of the trickle down from PNG’s liquefied natural gas (LNG) windfall, with development arguably reversing on the island of around 200,000 people during the past 15 years.

Investment boost

O’Neill’s visit, which marks the first by a serving prime minister since a ceasefire was signed in 1998, looks set to usher in a new era of relations and investment. Breaking arrows in a traditional reconciliation ceremony held jointly with Autonomous Bougainville Government (ABG) president, John Momis, O’Neill announced a $590,000 development package for the island, while promising to invest $2.14bn in the province over the next five years.
Bougainville’s needs echo PNG’s own development priorities, with infrastructure, services, health care and employment all featuring high on the list.
O’Neill’s development package includes funds for roads around the provincial capital, Buka. During the trip, the minister for state-owned enterprises, Ben Micah, who accompanied O’Neill, also announced plans to reopen Bougainville’s international airport, Aropa.
The government hopes that flights operated by the national carrier, Air Niugini, will be re-established within three months, paving the way for the resumption of international connections to the Solomon Islands. The plan to reopen the airport is expected to improve the delivery of goods and services, while boosting the local economy.

Panguna’s future

The measures are widely regarded as the first steps in a programme of reconciliation, setting the stage for future dialogue.
The ABG, which is now officially recognised by many governments, has made overtures towards resuming operations at the Panguna copper mine on its own terms. While an agreement has yet to be made, BCL chairman, Peter Taylor, recently proposed a five-year timeline leading to the reopening of the mine, which dovetails with an impending independence referendum to be tabled in Bougainville between 2015 and 2020.
Bougainvillians have long identified much more strongly with their South Pacific, Melanesian neighbours than PNG.
The desire to be seen as distinct from mainland PNG was a major source of tension over how earnings from the Panguna mine were distributed and also lies at the root of the independence movement. Before the mine’s closure, Bougainville received 1.23% of the government’s 5% royalty commission.

Economy versus independence

Yet without mining revenues, Bougainville’s economy has stagnated, relying, in part, on assistance from the central government. Resurrecting its mining operations is seen as Bougainville’s only means of achieving independence.
However, a move to reopen Panguna will not be straightforward. Hostility is expected from landowners, while feelings still run high among those who suffered during the war.
Despite the challenges that exist, the fact that the BCL remains listed and is still trading on the Australian Stock Exchange 25 years after the mine closed has instilled optimism in some that the mine could reopen.
However, with Bougainville’s independence remaining tied, at this juncture, to Panguna, the question of whether the island can operate as an independent state remains the subject of heated debate.
Commenting on the issue in an interview given to the Australian media, Taylor questioned whether independence was the best option for Penguna. “If Bougainville is the world’s newest nation, with no track record of managing projects, as opposed to PNG which has a long track record, it’s going to be easier to raise the money if Bougainville doesn’t go down the independence route,” he said.
While the nature of PNG’s partnership with Bougainville has yet to be defined, investors will watch with interest to see how relations between the governments in Port Moresby and Arawa develop, against a backdrop of untapped minerals.

Source: The National

PM’s gives hope to people

THE recent visit by Prime Minister Peter O’Neill to the Autonomous Region of Bougainville has united the leaders and their people, Bougainville Governor Joe Lera (pictured) told Parliament yesterday.
Lera said O’Neill’s visit to the region had a huge impact on the people.
He said one of the major impacts of that visit was that he united all the leaders of Bougainville and the people.
He said the four MPs and ABG leaders plus the president decided to hold regular meetings quarterly.
Lera said another impact of that visit was it removed the suspicions that had taken root in the minds of the people 15 years after the
He said that mentality contributed to the poor relationship between the two governments and slowed down the implementation of the peace agreement.
He said O’Neill gave hope to the people 15 years after the crisis.
He said they had now seen the light through the high impact projects and the people were very happy.


Source: Radio New Dawn on Bougainville

By Aloysius Laukai

The Chairman of the ten member ABG member’s forum, JOHN KEN says that his committee has been working with all parties to make sure the AROPA airport is opened this year.
He told New Dawn FM this afternoon that a separate meeting organized between the landowners have all agreed to re-open the AROPA airport so that Business can start in this part of Bougainville.
The member who is representing the people of South Nasioi which covers the airport area said that his people were ready to participate in economic activities that this new development will bring.
He said that he was happy to see impact projects moving to Central Bougainville this year.
Member Ken said that the ABG members and the National Members have also agreed to work together in the name of development of the region.
He said in the past this cooperation was not good and this was creating divisions between their followers.

Source: Post-Courier

Mekamui denies knowledge of US Citizen


NOAH Musingku’s International Bank of Me’ekamui has denied any knowledge of US citizen Barry Webb who was arrested over the weekend for illegally bringing Bougainville Kina into the country. Mr Webb was caught on Saturday entering Papua New Guinea through Port Moresby’s Jackson’s Airport. He was carrying 1.6 million Bougainville Kina, a currency which the Bank of PNG says is not legal tender. In a short response to an enquiry by this newspaper about Mr Webb and his illicit cargo, a representative of the Me’ekamui Bank said: “We do not know this person and do not know what article you are referring to Sir.” Mr Webb has claimed he brought the freshly printed currency into the country to deliver to Musingku, who rules over the self-proclaimed Twin Kingdoms of Papaala and Me’ekamui in Tonu, South Bougainville as King David Peii II. From his jungle stronghold, he operates the International Bank of Me’ekamui which, according to its website, offers “world-class financial solutions”. The bank has its own currency showing the face of Musingku and other prominent Bougainvilleans on the various denominations. Webb is reported to have told investigators the notes in his possession are samples for the Bougainville bank and that he was travelling at the invitation of Tonu authorities. Autonomous Bougainville Government (ABG) Finance Minister Alfred Punghau said, in light of the incident, his Government “will stand firm to ensure its regional security is maintained through an approach that benefits the Bougainville people. “Within the Bougainville Peace Agreement the ABG does not and will not condone the actions of the Me’ekamui Faction headed by U-Vistract,” the Minister said. “The U-Vistract-sponsored currency is in itself in breach of the Bougainville Peace Agreement and is not recognised by the ABG as legal tender in Bougainville. I would like to take this time to also like to clarify to the Bougainville People that the only legal tender allowed in Bougainville is the Papua New Guinea Kina.” Mr Punghau said Webb had broken PNG laws by attempting to bring the currency into Bougainville. “The ABG strongly condemns the actions of those who undermine Bougainville’s integrity with such scandal,” the Minister said.

Source: Post-Courier

Travel to Bougainville to be controlled


The Prime Minister Peter O’Neil said in Parliament that the Government would now be regulating the control of travel to and from Bougainville. Anyone wanting to go in and out of Bougainville will have to get clearance from the PNG Government and Autonomous Region of Bougainville before travel. This follows a question by Governor for Southern Highlands yesterday on the floor of Parliament, asking what the government was doing or going to do about foreigners bringing in illegal items and interfering with processes, the Government is managing, to restore peace in and with the Autonomous Bougainville Government. A trend is now showing that foreigners whom the Prime Minister described as ‘Carpet Baggers’ are going into Bougainville and misleading the people. “We need to regulate the control of foreigners who are entering Bougainville,” said Mr O’Neill.  “We are not trying to restrict genuine people, both businessmen and women and investors, who want to invest in Bougainville, but we must get rid of con men and every other person who is coming in to take advantage of our People.” The Government is now opening up more services in Bougainville including the opening of Aropa Airport which is due to happen in a few months. Through this particular facility and others in Buka, the government will be able to control the movement of people in and out of Bougainville. The alarm is raised after the mayhem of an American illegally bringing in cash totaling 1.6 million of illegal cash. Mr O’Neil said the so called money was printed in Philippines or elsewhere and brought into the country only to satisfy a self proclaimed king.


Source: The National

Review finds failings in Bougainville deal

A REVIEW on the Bougainville Peace Agreement has revealed significant failings by the Government and Autonomous Bougainville Government to implement its recommendations.
The peace agreement was signed in Arawa between the two governments in 2001 and was given legal effect in 2002 through the Organic Law on Peace-Building in Bougainville-Autonomous Bougainville Government-Bougainville Referendum.
Prime Minister Peter O’Neill revealed this in Parliament yesterday when he presented a statement on his goodwill visit to the region last month.
He told the House that every five years, both governments were required to commission an independent review of the implementation of the peace agreement.
“Last year, the National Government and the Autonomous Bougainville Government commissioned that review and the review is now complete,” he said.
“The review found that there have been significant failings on both sides, we have not done enough to implement the agreement.”
He said what occurred in Bougainville was a terrible tragedy but it was now time to rebuild.
“My visit was an assurance to the people of Bougainville that the Government is firmly committed to fully implementing the peace agreement and returning normalcy to their lives.”
The government’s priorities for Bougainville this year are the:
Sealing of the Kokopau to Buin road;
re-opening Aropa airport;
rehabilitating the Buka Island ring road;
restoration of the water and sewerage system for Arawa and Buka;
restoration of Kieta wharf;
rehabilitation of bridges on the South and West roads; and,
Restoration of Radio Bougainville.
He said the ABG had a lot of hard work ahead of itself. However with the imminent passage of the Bougainvillean Public Service Act and with support from national departments, the Bougainville public service was slowly being re-built.

Source: The National

Arawa: Flag carrier opens office

NATIONAL flag carrier Air Niugini will be resuming ticketing sales in Arawa, 25 years after the original office was closed following the Bougainville uprising.
Located in the Post PNG office, it was opened by State Enterprises Minister Ben Micah.
The airline’s commercial manager Dominic Kaumu said the move was to bring services closer to the people, especially those from Central and South Bougainville who spent a lot of money on sea and road travel to Buka to purchase tickets.
Speaking before the opening in Arawa, Kaumu said the initiative to have their office within the Post PNG office was in line with government moves to have all 16 state-owned enterprises work ing closely to lift productivity.
This is the first such arrangement between the two and Kaumu is hopeful similar arrangements will be made with other state-owned companies in centres around PNG.
Two ticketing officers will be based at the new office, with Air Niugini looking at the possibility of training Post PNG staff to take care of business for them as well.
“This is a cost-effective arrangement and will see that we pay rent back to a sister company and the government,” Kaumu said.
The opening of the Arawa branch comes 25 years after its former office had to be closed due to the armed conflict between Panguna landowners and operators of the Panguna copper mine.
With the airline’s introduction of e-ticketing, ticket purchase has been made easier although the only operational airport has been on Buka Island and most of the region’s population have had to travel long distances to catch their flights.
Davis announced that the Aropa Airport, near Arawa, would be re-opened within the next two weeks.
The re-opening was set for Monday this week but was postponed for unknown reasons.


Source: Radio New Dawn on Bougainville

BY Alex Munme

TEN Bougainville Police Recruits arrived today from Bomana Police Training College.
Provincial Police Commander, Spencer Aili said they include eight non Bougainvilleans and two Bougainvilleans.
He said another ten will join them later making a total of 20 to boost the manpower in the region.
PPC Aili said these recruits will be dispersed to North, Central and South to take up their posts.
Mr. Aili said he believes these recruits and others will perform their tasks without fear or favor until Bougainville gets full autonomy or Independence.
Meanwhile, he said a full update on Police Report will be released to the general public through this Radio Station soon.

Source: Radio New Dawn on Bougainville

By Aloysius Laukai

The Minister for State Enterprises, BEN MICHA has promised Aropa airport returning to International Airport.
He made these remarks at the meeting with the AROPA Airport landowners in Arawa yesterday.
Minister Micha said that on the Opening of Aropa airport the Government of Papua New Guinea will invite the Prime Minister of Solomon Islands to also attend the ceremony.
He said that this will allow the return of SOLOMON AIRLINES to fly between Aropa and Honiara giving Bougainville Passengers other flying options rather than flying to Port Moresby.
The State Minister said that AROPA was in a strategic location and will make sure Customs and Quarantine Officers are stationed in Arawa to clear Passengers and Planes at the Aropa airport.

Source: Radio New Dawn on Bougainville

By Aloysius Laukai

The Traditional landowners of the closed AROPA International airport in Central Bougainville want the AROPA airport to open this year.
They made this commitment during a meeting between the National Minister for Civil Aviation, Communication, State Enterprises and the Bougainville Regional member, JOE LERA in Arawa yesterday.
The meeting was also attended by the ABG ministers for Veterans Affairs, DAVID SISITO, JOHN KEN the ABG member for South Nasioi and the ABG Minister for Primary Industry, NICHOLAS DARKU.
Also present was the Bougainville Chief Administrator and Bougainville Chief Planner, LESLY TSERAHA former combatants, ISHMAEL TOROAMA and SAM KAUONA.
The meeting was told by the Principal landowner MR. POKONA that although they have agreed in principle to open the airport the Government must address landowner grievances that have already be relayed to the Administration authorities.
The meeting agreed to clear out the outstanding issues and sign an MOU and Ground Breaking ceremony in two weeks time.

Source: Radio New Dawn on Bougainville

By Aloysius Laukai

The Former Bougainville Revolutionary Commanders, ISHMAEL TOROAMA and SAM KAUONA yesterday guaranteed the safety of aircrafts and passengers if the AROPA International Airport is re-opened again.
Speaking at the meeting with AROPA AIRPORT landowners in Arawa yesterday, MR. TOROAMA said that time for fighting is over and now is time to rebuild.
He said that they are looking at development throughout Bougainville and really support the restoration of Government services into the island.
MR. TOROMA said that he and his boys will make sure that the area is safe and conducive for business activities to return once the airport is re-opened.


Meeting with Aropa landowners in Arawa Yesterday

Ishmael Toroama at the meeting yesterday

Source: Radio New Dawn on Bougainville

By Aloysius Laukai

ARAWA was packed to capacity again this morning when the people gathered to see the re-opening of the Arawa Post office and an AIR NIUGINI sales office.
The ceremony was witnessed by Ministers from the National Government and leaders of Central Bougainville.
In his opening remarks, the Minister for State Enterprises, BEN MICHA said that the National Government was committed to supporting the ABG to build her capacity.
MR. MICHA said that building Airports and bridges and now the Arawa Post office will definitely new window of opportunity for local Businesses.
He said that it has been more than twenty years for the people of Central and South Bougainville to travel all the way to Buka for postal services.
The Minister for Communication, JIMMY MIRINGTORO became the first person to pay for a Post Office Box after the ceremony.

Arawa Post Office opened this morning and pictured is State Enterprises Minister Ben Micah in Arawa this morning.

Source: Post-Courier

Lera hails PM’s visit to Bougainville

BOUGAINVILLE Regional MP Joe Lera has praised Prime Minister Peter O’Neill on his recent good will visit that has now united the leaders of Bougainville.
“His visit to the north, south and central Bougainville has had much impact in a lot of areas but I wanted to mention three areas that was impacted by his visit,” Mr Lera said.
He said one area that the visit has the greatest impact was in uniting all leaders of Bougainville and its people.
“For the first time after the Prime Minister’s visit, we the four national MP’s and Autonomous Bougainville Government leadership with President decided to hold quarterly meetings throughout the year and the first was done after the Prime Minister left the island.”
Mr Lera said the other major impact was that the Prime Minister’s visit removed the suspicion that has taken root for 15 years after the crisis between the ABG and national Government.
He said the suspicion resulted bad working relationship between the Autonomous Bougainville Government and the national government which contributed in the delay in the implementation of the Peace Agreement.
Mr Lera said the other big impact of the Prime Minister’s visit was that it gave renewed hope to the people after 15 years.
“Now they are seeing some light through these high impact projects that the Prime Minister has announced like power, road sealing, airport opening which the people are very happy,” he said.
He said the people of Bougainville are still talking about the visit of a Prime Minister to Bougainville after 15 years.
“If we can continue this momentum of relationship that the Prime Minister has started will change the mindset of people of Bougainville to decide maybe not total independence but autonomy within Papua New Guinea,” Mr Lera said.


Source: Papua New Guinea Mine Watch

A reader of PNG Mine Watchnamed Alan comments on the article below: "This article is all lies. Clearly you have NO IDEA !"

Rio Tinto and BCL are not welcome in Panguna
Peter Nerau

BCL are not welcome in Panguna. They were the reason why the mine was closed.
They failed to address landowner’s issues. They underestimated the educated landowners like the late Francis Ona.
CRA and BCL were themselves bullies assisted by the racist Australian Colonial Administration to trespass on the people’s land. They were never invited at the first place. They forced their way into Panguna and Bougainville without any invitation and consent of the people.
BCL the people of the Meekamui Tribal Nation and the Meekamui Defence Force do not want BCL back in Panguna.
Momis is a failed leader. He has blood in his hands. He has no respect of the culture of the people of Bougainville. The blood of the 20,000 lives are crying to be memorise and their spirits put to rest.
The present Panguna Landowners Association is not the true representative of all the landowners in Panguna.
The Meekamui Government is the entity that represents the true aspirations of all the landowners and they don’t want the mine to be open at this stage without addressing outstanding issues like memorial and compensation.
The Meekamui frankly do not welcome BCL and ABG at Panguna which is a no go zone to protect the resources of the people.
The Meekamui are the custodian of the people’s resources and they will continue to protect these resources by following the footstep of their late human rights leader Francis Ona.

Source: Post-Courier

Government committed to Bougainville referendum

THE national Government has made a recommendation for a parliamentary committee to be established to provide political oversight and leadership in relation to the Bougainville referendum.
Prime Minister Peter O’Neill in a statement to parliament on his recent historic visit to Bougainville, said what had happened in Bougainville was a terrible tragedy.
“But it is now time to rebuild. My visit was an assurance to the people of Bougainville that the national government is firmly committed to implementing the peace agreement and returning normalcy to their lives,” he said.
“We are all familiar with the details of the Bougainville conflict. But what matters now is the long road to peace and reconciliation and the restoration of normalcy on the Island.”
He said the national Government is aware of acute capacity problems faced by the Autonomous Bougainville Government.
He said the conflict resulted in a complete breakdown in the delivery of basic services.
“After years of neglect roads, health centres and schools have deteriorated to an unacceptable level. We need to rebuild these institutions.”
Mr O’Neill said due to these special needs the ABG has very different funding arrangements to Provincial Governments.
“The funding arrangements may be inadequate and this needs to be addressed,” he said. He said the government agreed that ABG would receive K500 million over five years, from 2011 to 2016, or K100 million per year, for major impact projects.
He informed parliament that the priority projects including  sealing the Kokopau to Buin road; re-opening Aropa airport; rehabilitating the Buka Island ring road; restoration of the water and sewerage system for Arawa and Buka; restoration of the Kieta wharf; rehabilitation of bridges on the South West Road; and restoration of radio Bougainville.
“These projects have been scoped and are now ready for implementation. This will make a huge change to the lives of the people of Bougainville,” he said.
“The purpose of my visit was to show the people of Bougainville that the National Government stands ready to help. I want all Bougainvilleans to be able to send their children to school, to get their crops to market and if they get sick to be able to see a health worker and receive proper treatment.
“My immediate priority is to rebuild the infrastructure of Bougainville so that when we hold the referendum, Bougainvilleans will be able to make a meaningful choice.”
He said when selecting the date for the referendum, consideration must be given to the following: whether weapons have been disposed of in accordance with the agreement; and whether the Bougainville Government is being conducted in accordance with internationally accepted standards of good governance.
“Whether the ABG has met internationally accepted standards will be determined by the Joint Supervisory Body after considering the findings of independent reviews of the arrangements.”
He said every five years the national Government and ABG are required to commission an independent review of the implementation of the peace agreement.
“Last year the national Government and the ABG commissioned that review. The review is now complete. The review found that there have been significant failings on both sides.
“We have not done enough to implement the agreement. There is a lot more work ahead”.

Source: EMTV


A special parliamentary committee will be established by the National Executive Council to provide political oversight, and leadership, for the Bougainville Referendum.
Prime Minister Peter O’Neill made this recommendation in parliament today when reporting on his goodwill tour to the Autonomous Region of Bougainville (ABG) last month.
Mr. O’Neill said there is a complete breakdown of government services in the region since the crisis, and the PNG government is not doing enough to restore these services.
The Prime Minister made his speech after question time.
He said it was the first visit by a Prime Minister in fifteen years, and his first to travel the four corners of the region through Buka, Buin, Siwai, Panguna and Arawa.
He said overall, the road to peace and reconciliation and the restoration of normalcy on the Island was a long one.
He reported to parliament that the Autonomous Bougainville Government has acute capacity problems.
And whilst all provinces in PNG face the problem of a poorly trained and aging workforce, the Prime Minister said it is worse in Bougainville since the crisis.
The conflict had seen many young people denied an education, and forced to flee their homes.
This, Mr. O’Neill said, had resulted in a complete breakdown in the delivery of basic services.
Prime Minister recommended that a special parliamentary committee be established to provide political oversight and leadership for the Bougainville Referendum.
Top priorities are the selecting of a date for the referendum consideration, and the K500 million funding assistance for 5 years since 2011.
Mr. O’Neill said the Autonomous Bougainville Government must meet internationally accepted standards, before being determined by the Joint Supervisory Body after considering the findings of independent reviews of arrangements, before coming up with a date for the referendum.
He also said the agreement on a special intervention fund of K100 million every year for 5 years by the National Government for years 2011 up to 2016, will also be a thing of the past.
Mr. O’Neill said following serious negotiations with the ABG, government priorities have been identified for 2014.
They are: the sealing of the Kokopau to Buin road, the re-opening of the Aropa airport, rehabilitating the Buka Island Ring Road, Restoration of the water and sewerage system for Arawa and Buka, restoration of the Kieta Wharf, rehabilitation of bridges on the South West Road, and Restoration of Radio Bougainville.
These projects have been scoped, and are now ready for implementation.
In two months or so, the Aropa airport is expected to be reopened.
In the meantime, PNG Power, MVIL and other statutory bodies are resuming the provision of their services in the region.



Source: Radio New Zealand International

Money man for separatist Bougainville group held in Port Moresby

Papua New Guinea authorities are holding an American man who allegedly tried to smuggle fake money into Bougainville from the United States on Saturday.
American citizen Barry Keith Webb flew in from Manila to Port Moresby with plans to continue to Buka.
The Post Courier says he was detained by airport authorities who found a brief case with newly printed counterfeit money, so called Bougainville kina.
Mr Webb had documents from King David Pei II who for years has claimed to head an independent Bougainville state based in the south of the province.
The documents supposedly authorise Mr Webb to represent the central bank of this breakaway state.

Source: Radio New Zealand International

Bougainville rebel faction joins PNG security debate

A senior member of the rebel Me'ekamui Defence Force has met the president of the autonomous Papua New Guinea province of Bougainville, John Momis, to discuss law and order issues.
The Post Courier reports Panguna based Steven Ona, who is second in command of the Me'ekamui Defence Force, travelled to Buka last week to speak about setting up a region-wide civilian security force.
Mr Ona told the paper the recent visit to Panguna by Mr Momis and the PNG prime minister, Peter O'Neill, had inspired the Panguna people to open up to the rest of Bougainville.
The historic visit also motivated his people to clean up their backyard.
He says they now plan to train youths as security guards to help maintain the rule of law throughout the region.
Mr Ona says there are all kinds of law and order issues and youth are the main culprits.
He says the force would assist the police service which is not as strong as it could be.




Source: The National

Bougainville leader trains women in government processes

MEMBER of the Bougainville House of Representatives Elizabeth Burain has helped train 47 Solomon Islands women understand government processes.
The mock parliament was organised by the Solomon Islands Parliament, United Nations Development Programme and the Pacific Islands Forum for women MPs.
The training was held last week.
Burain has been providing advice and guidance to women considering running for elections this year.
She said the mock parliament was a great idea as it helped ignite the passion and desire for women to enter politics.
“The training, held last week, has equipped women and boosted their confidence to contest in the elections,” she said.
“Women in the Solomon Islands now know where to start and how to go about preparing to become a member of parliament.
“They have received knowledge to understand the inner workings of the parliament such as standing orders, motion, bills and procedures of parliament.”
The women were trained on issues including electoral processes, how government in the Solomon Islands is structured and how the parliament works.
“I was able to share with the women some of my experiences in terms of my campaign when running for parliament, the importance of knowing your constituency well and the importance of getting a good campaign team and campaign coordinator,” she said.



Source: Bougainville24

Landowners, ABG and BCL work to right the wrongs
By Leonard Fong Roka



Discussions between mine-affected landowners, Bougainville Copper Limited (BCL) and the Autonomous Bougainville Government (ABG) are being held not to re-open the Panguna mine but to right the wrongs of the past.
The major players need to complete many tasks before progress towards a mine can even be considered.
These include the implementation of a mining bill for Bougainville, the push for BCL-Bougainville Bel Kol, social mapping, baseline studies and increased community engagement.
All stakeholders require the certainty of a widely supported Bougainvillean mining bill and this is now one of the major tasks that the ABG is working on.
The ABG is working to create a mining act in consultation with the landowners and the various interest groups and legal experts.
The transitional mining bill is being worked on but it is not complete, still subject to Bougainville-wide awareness and consultation to gauge the opinion of the key stakeholders and the broader community.
Bel Kol, social mapping and the baseline studies are the responsibility of the Joint Panguna Negotiation Coordination Committee (JPNCC) made up of mine-affected landowners, the ABG, PNG Government and BCL.
Bel Kol, a unique Bougainvillean cultural custom of remorse, is expected to take place in 2014.
After Bel Kol there can be social mapping and environmental baseline studies that will pave way for full transparency amongst the landowners of Panguna mine-affected areas and inform their future interactions with BCL.
Amongst other activities this will involve community engagement where landowners’ opinions on the past, the present and the future on mining will be collected.
There will also be environmental baseline studies where data will be collected on the current state of mine-affected areas so it can be compared to past information.
Independent specialist firms will engaged by the JPNCC to study the impact of mining on the people and their environment.
These all activities will guide a realistic and responsible path forward for landowners, the ABG and BCL.



Source: Radio New Zealand International

PNG resources boom could open way for ponzi schemes

Papua New Guinea's resources boom could leave the country more susceptible to fraudsters and ponzi schemes, according to new research by the Australian National University.
John Cox has been studying the effect of fast money schemes like the U-Vistract scheme a decade ago  (find out more about U-Vistract, Noah Musingku and the fraudulent Bougainville Kina scheme - click here!) , and why PNG's educated middle class has paid over 208 million US dollars to such schemes since 1998.
He says the resource boom is creating high expectations of wealth that could create a sense of mistrust that people will prey on.

"So what I'm hearing from the people that I speak to is 'PNG's a rich country, we shouldn't need to have aid programmes, we shouldn't have poor people here, there's something wrong with our system' and they often blame it on corruption, but more often it become what we call a negative nationalist account. They say 'we're under-developed, it's because our politicians are corrupt.' "

John Cox says the system and government corruption is often used by ponzi operators in PNG as an excuse for why money hasn't shown up.



Source: PNG Attitude

Award-winning Bougainvillean author facing legal challenge


BOUGAINVILLE’s award-winning writer and pre-eminent author, Leonard Fong Roka (pictured), is likely to face a court battle over a short story featured in his second collection of short stories, Moments in Bougainville published last year.


Litigation for defamation has been threatened by the family of an ex-girlfriend in Mr Roka’s home area in the Tumpusiong Valley near Panguna.
Mr Roka said that the story, Tongare Love, was a record of his time with a woman he loved and wanted to marry. But her family would not allow it and instead they began to threaten him.
“Yeah, they openly proclaimed across the Panguna District that I was a sex maniac,” Mr Roka recalled. “But I did not take them to court for defamation. They announced I was a drunkard and worthless, and still I did not take them to court.
“They threatened me at home with offensive weapons and still I did not bring them to court for trespassing and harassment. They beat and molested me in public and I ignored that.
“Thugs broke into my home and stole my property while others justified that crime as compensation for befriending their relative. But I did not take any legal action.
“Then the family and members of the church they belonged to announced I was HIV positive but still I did not take them to court.”
Mr Roka said he had to write “something to record my love for her and the reasons why I was trying my best to settle down with her.”
That’s when the girl’s clan members threatened to initiate legal action.
“On our last meeting in 2010, I received verbal consent from the girl to record our tale,” Mr Roka said, “but my mistake was not to have it recorded in black and white.”
Leonard Fong Roka, now a final year student in International Relations at Divine Word University, is the author of two books and now is finishing his third book. Brokenville, a 25 chapter autobiography of his experiences of Bougainville’s crisis years, is undergoing final editing in Australia.
A fourth book, an ethno-political exploration and mapping of the Bougainville conflict and the province’s future, is due ito be published later this year or early in 2015.
“I knew back then the world was against me,” Mr Roka says, “but I have to write. Worst, I am an introvert.”




Source: Post-Courier

Illegal tender

American national held with 1.6million in ‘illegal’ currency
PAPUA New Guinea authorities are holding an American man who tried to smuggle into Bougainville 1.6 million Bougainville kina from the United States on Saturday.


American citizen Barry Keith Webb (pictured) flew in from Manila on Air Niugini flight PX 011, which arrived at 5am on Saturday with bookings to transit to Buka on Air Niguini flight PX 251 the same day. Airport authorities detained Mr Webb after going through his documents and baggage, which included a brief case full of newly printed Bougainville kina totalling 1.6 million.
The airport authorities consis-ting Customs, Immigration, Natio-nal Airport Corporation and Air Niugini alerted responsible government authorities including police and the central bank, who interrogated the man, who claimd to be an executive of the International Organisation of Economic Development (IOED).
The United States Embassy was also alerted and their officials were also present at the airport during the interrogation, which almost took four hours at the Jackson International Airport on Saturday morning.
According to Mr Webb, he was travelling to Bougainville on an invitation from authorities in Bougainville, specifically from the Corner Pinati Avenue, King Square, Tonu City.
He had in possession documents and a letter from those in Tonu, which he handed to Government authorities as proof.
In one of the documents which the Post-Courier is in possession of, Tonu City leaders wrote to Webb in November 12, 2013 advising him that he had won a permanent position to represent the central bank of Bougainville as the minister for international monetary relations.


Source: Post-Courier

American held with ‘illegal Bougainville Kina’

The letter was signed by a King David Peii II (pictured) as the head of state, Sir Peter Lising as the governor of the Central Bank and Roger Renaud as the secretary of State on his permanent appointment with details of his job descriptions.


"As the Minister for International Monetary Relations for the Central Bank of Bougainville to represent the Central Bank of Bougainville for the purpose of developing relationships internationally with Central Banks of other sovereign nations and /or commercial banks and additionally for the purposes of developing corresponding accounts and facilitating exchange relationships for Bougainville’s Kina (BVK) with other currencies worldwide," they advised Webb.
Under this decree, your responsibilities shall include, but not be limited to the following:


  • OPEN accounts in other central banks for the purpose of facilitating relationships with those sovereign nations;
  • ACT as primary signatory in the establishing and maintenance of said accounts;
  • MAINTAIN relationships with the central banks where accounts are located;
  • FACILITATE contracts for exchange of Bougainville kina with other currencies;
  • ACT as facilitator and/or signatory in the process of the issuance and/or monetisation of any sovereign guarantee issued by the Government of Bougainville and/or the central bank of Bougainville;
  • ACT as facilitator and/or signatory in the process of the development of the monetary system of Bougainville; and
  • FULFILL any and all decrees issued under the authority of or by King David Peii II.
  • But Bank of PNG Governor Loi Bakani told the Post-Courier last night that the money was illegal and that the central bank lawyers were looking at possible penalties and working on the charges to be laid today.

"The money is illegal. If you look at the 100 Bougainville kina note, it has the kina name on it but different features and pictures, therefore it is illegal," Mr Bakani said.
"Also the legal tender is in Papua New Guinea kina and the change of the design also has its own penalties."
Mr Bakani, who was also at the airport for the questioning, said the Bank Act was breached and he has instructed his lawyers to work on the charges to be laid on Mr Webb today, including other penalties.
Customs Commissioner Ray Paul confirmed the incident but said he is waiting for full details from all government authorities before he could comment.
He said the Customs office will hold a press conference today about the matter.
Immigrations officials also told the Post-Courier last night that Mr Webb would face penalties but said they would rather have the police and other authorities announce the consequences he would face today. Police advised they will respond today when they all meet to determine the next course of action.




Source: ESBC

Don't miss the latest episode of Papua New Guinea Minewatch's hate campaign:

Source: Papua New Guinea Mine Watch

Rio Tinto profits expose Momis lies
by ramunickel

Bougainville President John Momis says Rio Tinto does not have the money to pay compensation for its war crimes and the terrible environmental damage caused by its Panguna mine. This means, according to Momis' warped logic, Bougainville should forget the past and welcome back Rio Tinto to re-open the mine so it can earn the money to pay reparations. Well, guess what? Rio Tinto has just posted a $10 billion profit for the year.
YUP, $10 billion, up from just $9.3 billion last year... does that sound like a company that can't afford to pay for its past abuses...?
Honest John Momis should stop trying to scare and mislead his people with his lies...

Rio Tinto Says Full-Year Profit Increased 10% on Cost Savings
Jesse Riseborough | Bloomberg

Rio Tinto Group, the world’s second-largest mining company, said profit rose 10 percent last year, beating analyst estimates as a $2 billion cost-cutting plan bolstered profitability.
Underlying profit was $10.2 billion, or 553.1 cents a share, from $9.3 billion, or 501.3 cents, a year earlier, London-based Rio said today in a statement. That compares with the $9.7 billion average of 23 analyst estimates compiled by Bloomberg. Net income was $3.7 billion after a loss of $3 billion last year.
Chief Executive Officer Sam Walsh, appointed 13 months ago, has cut costs after investor criticism that the world’s biggest mining companies had overspent on acquisitions and expansions, pushing down commodity prices and curbing profit. Analysts are expecting Rio to bolster returns to shareholders as cost-savings enhance earnings.
“These strong results reflect the progress we are making to transform our business and demonstrate how we are fulfilling our commitments to improve performance, strengthen the balance sheet and deliver greater value for shareholders,” Walsh, a 64-year-old Australian, said today in the statement.
Rio declined 0.4 percent to close at A$67.83 in Sydney trading today. The stock advanced 1.5 percent to 3,510 pence yesterday in London trading. It increased its dividend 15 percent to 192 cents.
The company reported record production of iron ore, bauxite and power station coal for 2013.



Source: Radio New Dawn on Bougainville

By Aloysius Laukai

The former member for Central Bougainville in the National Government and Minister for Mining, SAM AKOITAI says Papua New Guinea is a metal based economy and the economy is controlled by Minerals and Petroleum which is 53 percent whilst the sectors like Fisheries, Tourism and Agriculture only account for only 17 percent.
He said that this means the main funding source to run Papua New Guinea comes from Metals.
MR. AKOITAI made these comments when supporting the ABG that re-opening of Panguna or establishing another operation if Panguna fails to start the economy was very important for Bougainville’s economic survival.
He said that even though we can talk about Agriculture and Fisheries to run Bougainville we will still fall short of funds for other projects like road, bridges and Education and Health Programs.
MR. AKOITAI said that he believes the mining can create the funds needed to resurrect these plantations to support the economy of Bougainville.



Source: Post-Courier

House of Representative member helps other women

Bougainville Member of House of Representatives Elizabeth Burain has this week been providing advice and guidance to women in the Solomon Islands who are considering running for elections later this year. Mrs Burain was a resource person at the Solomon Islands Mock / Practice Parliament for women that was organised by the Solomon Islands Parliament, UNDP and Pacific Islands Forum. During the week, 47 women were trained on issues including electoral processes, how government in Solomon Islands is structured and how Parliament works.  The three day training event was followed by a one day televised debate in the Parliament chamber where the women participants discussed a motion relating to the effectiveness of Rural Development Funds (which is similar to the District service Improvement programme in PNG). Mrs Burain commented – “This mock or practice Parliament is a great idea as it helps ignite the passion and desire of women to enter politics.  The training this week has equipped women and boosted their confidence to contest elections Now, women in Solomon Islands will know where to start and how to go about preparing to become a member of parliament and they will understand the inner workings of parliament such as the standing orders, motion, bills and procedures of the parliament”.   The member continued – “I was able to share with the women from the Solomon Islands some of my experiences in terms of my campaign when running for Parliament, the importance of knowing your constituency well and the importance of getting a good campaign team and a good campaign coordinator.”

Source: Bougainville24

Bougainville and NSW Parliament twinned


NSW Parliament House, home to the Legislative Assembly and the Legislative Council

The New South Wales Parliament has a partnership arrangement with the parliament of the Autonomous Region of Bougainville, the Bougainville House of Representatives.
The partnership is part of the Commonwealth Parliamentary Association’s twinning program, established in June 2007. Every Australian state and territory parliament is twinned with one or more parliaments in the Asia-Pacific region.
The NSW Parliament has received funding to support the partnership arrangement from the Australian Agency for International Development (AusAID), under its Pacific Public Sector Linkages Program.
The funding, until August 2015, allows practical support for strengthening the parliaments of Bougainville and Solomon Islands, through staff placements, secondments and other activities.
The NSW Parliament’s current activities with the Bougainville House of Representatives are the latest development in a long tradition of participating in training and development projects aimed at supporting parliamentary democracy elsewhere in the Asia-Pacific region and beyond.
The Autonomous Region of Bougainville, formerly known as the North Solomons Province, is an autonomous region of Papua New Guinea and is the largest of the Solomon Islands group, to which it ecologically and geographically belongs.
The region comprises the large islands of Bougainville and Buka, and assorted outlying islands including the Carterets. The capital is currently Buka, although it is possible that Arawa, on Bougainville Island, may become the capital in future. The population of Bougainville is approximately 200,000.
The Autonomous Region of Bougainville is governed by the House of Representatives. An elected President (currently the Hon John Momis) forms the Autonomous Bougainville Government and heads the Bougainville Executive Cabinet.


Bougainville House of Representatives

The Autonomous Bougainville Government public sector (the Administration) is responsible for providing government services to the people of Bougainville. There are a total of 41 positions in the House of Representatives – a President, 33 seats representing single-member electorates, three reserved women’s seats and 3 reserved ex-combatants seats.
The Speaker is elected by the House of Representatives and is not directly elected by the populace. The four members of the Papua New Guinea Parliament for the region (North, South and Central Bougainville, plus one Region representative who in other provinces of PNG would be the Premier of the province) are able to participate in sittings of the House of Representatives but cannot introduce motions or vote, and their presence does not count for the purposes of establishing quorum.
The NSW Parliament commenced work with the Bougainville House of Representatives in May 2009.
Each year since then has seen a range of joint activities. In 2013 there were been three undertakings worthy of note:
In January 2013 – Joel Tukana, Senior Editor Hansard, attended Hansard conference in Perth, Western Australia. The conference venue allowed for meetings with representatives of the ForTheRecord company, to investigate recording and reporting options for the House of Representatives.
In April 2013 – Regional Workshops for Members of the Bougainville House of Representatives. NSW Parliament MP Melanie Gibbons, CDI Associate Warren Cahill and NSW Parliament twinning project coordinator Simon Johnston participated in a series of three regional workshops in the North, South and Central regions of Bougainville.
In May 2013 – Following the annual Effective Parliamentary Committee Inquiry Course (Centre for Democratic Institutions funded and hosted by NSW Parliament), two Committee staff were seconded to Legislative Council Committee offices – Jane Kiroha and Julie Masike. The week-long secondment involved close collaboration with staff from NSW Parliament and National Parliament of Solomon Islands, putting into practice the lessons of the EPCIC and developing projects from home parliaments.

Source: Papua New Guinea Mine Watch

Bougainville President thinks a lot like our Australian colonial ‘masters’


Charles Barnes thought and spoke like John Momis on the issue of Panguna mine
















Brothers by other mothers?

The now departed Minister for Territories, Charles Barnes, had a tad paler complexion, and hailed from rural Australia – but he certainly thought so much like the ABG’s current President, John Momis, you cant tell them apart.

Here is what Charles Barnes said about mining on Bougainville in 1969, immediately after he had sent in the riot squads to beat up Bougainville’s protesting mothers:

“The attitude of a handful of people [women landowners] may attract our sympathy, and we may go to considerable lengths to resolve their problems. But in the last resort, we cannot allow them to block this great prospect [Rio Tinto mine] and thus throw into doubt the policies on which the futures of more than two million people depend”
“Mr Barnes said the people of the Territory had a choice of whether to drift in a primitive and backward situation depending on the generosity of the Australian taxpayer, or to advance as a modern State financed by its own sources”.
And what does his long lost brother, Honest John Momis say now he is facing a revolt among the landowners of Panguna, who wont go along with his hand-picked ‘chiefs’ … well:

“This minority of leaders risk destroying the positive partnership that landowners and the ABG have worked so hard to create and undermine preparations for negotiations with Bougainville Copper Limited and the National Government”.
“The ABG supports re-opening Panguna, we see that as the most realistic way of contributing to broad-based economic growth, and generating the ABG revenues required to meet the needs of our people”.
The colonial playbook is alive and well – tell the ‘natives’ the project is all about them, for their benefit, and only extreme and primitive outsiders would dare oppose ‘development’. Then take the ore, make the cash, and leave behind a smouldering wreck.

Honest John and Barnes the Impaler you two are a match made in heaven.

Source: Mekamui News

Remarks From Justin J Borgia on Panguna Issue
By Justin Jose Borgia

There are many good views expressed by bougies for and against the mining issue. given the complex nature of the issue, and the rights for BCL under the colonial BCA agreement, and the legacy issues as a result of mining 72-89, it is legally complex for ABG towards preparing landowners and itself to negotiate a new deal with whoever investor, which is will permanently and finally end the BCA once it adopts its own bville mining law.
This week the ex-combatants, of all three regions of bville, including Thomas Tari, Sam Kauona, Glen Tovirka, Marcellin Getsi, Peter Bari, etc, have been involved in an atmosphere of cooperation and partnership consulting on the draft mining law. and they are now beginning to appreciate the complex issues involved of the old regime and the new regime entails that is totally unique from PNG, and other parts of the world, with provisions like ownership of minerals and licensing going to the people. this process of consultations will continue, to all key stakeholders on bougainville. you must be reminded that ABG is very mindful of this law, and bougainivlleans are contributing to create this law. so it takes time.
Be reminded that critics from all fronts have been very healthy and useful for ABG in this particular issue.The excombatants have requested for more educational consultations, as they begin to appreciate the issues they never knew previously.



Source: Post-Courier

Ona talks law and order with Momis


A SENIOR member of the Me’ekamui Defence Force has met with Bougainville President John Momis to discuss law and order issues.
Steven Ona (pictured), second in command to General Moses Pipiro of the Me’ekamui Defence Force in Panguna, travelled to Buka from his mountain stronghold on Tuesday to speak about setting up a region-wide civilian security force.
Such a meeting between the two leaders would have seemed an impossibility only a short time ago.
Mr Ona told this newspaper that the Prime Minister and President’s recent visit had inspired the Panguna people, including his Me’ekamui faction, to open up to the rest of Bougainville.
The historic visit also motivated his people to "clean up their backyard". They now plan to train youths as security guards to help maintain the rule of law throughout the region. "We plan to train the youths up in Panguna first," the commander said."We want Albert Magoi from the United Bougainville Training Institute to conduct this training."
Mr Magoi who has served with both the PNG military and Bougainville Revolutionary Army has been training ex-combatants and disaffected youths in Bougainville since the end of hostilities.
Mr Ona says Bougainville police are currently struggling with manpower issues.
"Nowadays there are all kinds of law and order problems coming up," he said.
"Youths are the main ones causing problems the drunks, those who take homebrew, smoke marijuana and the police are currently not able to deal with all of these problems.
They are not as strong as they could be. That’s why we want to support them." Mr Ona stressed that the security force  be trained to work under the command of the local constabulary. "We don’t want to put the police down, put their work down.
We just want to work behind them to help them in our communities. You could say we will just boost their manpower, support them.
"So we want to set up security all through Bougainville. Have them go through proper training and go back to their places and help the police keep law and order.
"We want to support the police so if we train youths properly, change their thinking, they can look after the place properly."
Mr Ona said the president Momis  was in full agreement with the concept. "He has been thinking the same thing there must be security training.
He has talked strongly about this. He has concerns on law and order and wants security to be set up. He wants to kickstart this quickly," Mr Ona said.
Mr Ona gave his assurance that the security force will not come under the command of the Me’ekamui.
"No, it’s a private monitoring system," he said. "They will report to the district officer who will report to the president."

Source: Post-Courier

Garden of gold


WHILE a Panguna mining meeting is underway in Buka between Bougainville Copper Limited executives led by Paul Coleman and the Panguna landowners and other stakeholders, this lone alluvial miner was going about his usual daily business – penning for gold for his bread and butter along the heavily polluted Kavarong River at Panguna. Most of the locals there don’t have gardens and penning for gold is their main means of putting food on the table and meeting their other needs.

Source: Radio New Dawn on Bougainville

By Aloysius Laukai

The ABG Minister for Commerce and Trade, WILFRED KOMBA says that any Business that intends to come into the region must come through the Commerce and Trade Division as a policy has been made to control investments into the region.
Minister Komba says that since the law was enacted this means that even Government State Entities like the MMI Insurance has to come under this arrangements.
He said that the ABG was now working on scrutinizing companies that established on Bougainville well before this law came about.
They are DIGICEL, ELA MOTORS, COCA COLA just to name a few.
Minister Komba said that the ABG was willing to welcome investors into the region as without investment there will be no service to the people of Bougainville.

Source: Radio New Dawn on Bougainville


By Aloysius Laukai

The ABG member for Konnou and Minister for Commerce and Trade, WILFRED KOMBA says that Reporters must do some investigations before they report as they can mislead the people.
Minister Komba made these comments on New Dawn FM this afternoon when replying to Post Courier report stating that members of ABG were not using these funds to support development projects.
Minister Komba explained that these funds were released quarterly to help the mobility of members to and from their electorates to Buka and are not for projects which are funded separately in the normal ABG Budget.
He said these funds can be used by members as discretionary funds to give small assistance especially when they are requested to attend their meetings or in assisting sick patients etc.
Minister Komba said that in 2014 another ONE HUNDRED THOUSAND has been budgeted which the members can use as small project funds within their constituencies.
New Dawn FM managed to talk to the ABG clerk then, ROBERT TAPI to explain on this Members support grant after nearly all former members lost in the 2010 election because their voters accused them of misusing these funds and were told that these funds were to support members perform their duties as mandated members of the Government of Bougainville.
He questioned what would the people think of their member who had no funds and receiving services like transport and accommodation on credit from small operators.

Source: Radio New Dawn on Bougainville

By Aloysius Laukai

The former Central Bougainville Member and National Minister for Mining, SAM AKOITAI (pictured) says the issue of the PANGUNA COPPER MINE was in the hands of the ABG and the people of Bougainville and no outsider should stick his nose in.


MR. AKOITAI told New Dawn FM this afternoon that the ABG and the landowners have come a long way in preparing their people for negotiating a new agreement that must be negotiated under Bougainville’s own mining law.
He said that Bougainville was the only Province in Papua New Guinea which has its own constitution and can make laws to protect its people and their resources and the people must respect and allow their government to quickly enact the Mining Laws and make it work for Bougainville.
MR. AKOITAI who is a very experienced person on Mining issue said that what the current government of President Momis was doing must be supported by the people of Bougainville who have fought for many years to make changes to the mining laws first from the colonial era and now under Papua New Guinea.
He said it is time to negotiate and start building infrastructures so that by the time everything is set Bougainville can benefit in high Copper and Gold prices which he said was at a record low at the moment.





Source: Bougainville24

Panguna mine can rejuvenate region




A Bougainville Copper Limited (BCL) operated mine at Panguna has the potential to revitalise Central Bougainville with upgrades to infrastructure and facilities.

However, any future decision as to whether the mine should be redeveloped is at least three years away, depending on findings from the environmental and social baseline studies, and completion of a pre-feasibility study.

According to the 2013 Order of Magnitude Study upgrades are needed to service a workforce employed at Panguna, the wider community and the functionality of the mine itself.

One regional issue that would be addressed would be the erratic nature of the power supply in Central Bougainville.

The study also suggested that education would be prioritised with upgrades to primary and secondary school facilities, as well as the creation of a mine training college to locally source employees.

Arawa town could benefit from an upgrade to its commercial centre and recreational facilities in the area.

An operational mine would also demand improvements to the port, airport, waste management facilities and emergency services.

The first steps toward achieving this vision will be the customary process of bel kol and the completion of the environmental, social and economic baseline studies.

These milestones come under the terms of reference of the Joint Panguna Negotiation Coordination Committee, which is comprised of representatives from landowners in mine affected areas, the Autonomous Bougainville Government, Government of Papua New Guinea and BCL.

BCL have looked to the landowners to lead discussions to ensure that a future operation at Panguna has their backing.


Source: ESBC 

PNG Mine Watch

The outrageous firework goes on!

Read below how the anonymous supporters of notorious local conmen and alleged former killers try to undermine the realistic policy of the democratically elected ABG government and its President John Momis.


Please don't be suprised if you feel like reading the script of a cheap soap opera made by a madhouse production:


Source: Papua New Guinea Mine Watch


Honest John Momis wants more Pangunas across Bougainville! How could this end badly!!

by ramunickel 

Does anyone remember President Momis’ 2013 Christmas address, you know the one where he acknowledged landowner communities were against Rio Tinto’s return – rather than 97% being for it, as he had previously claimed – the one where he accused landowners of “changing sides” … the one where he promised to focus “on Agriculture, Fishing and Forestry for much needed revenue” … i.e. the Rimbunan Hijau + RD Tuna solution … the one where claimed “talks on the Panguna mine” would occur at a “much slower pace”.

Well it turns out he was lying … Never, not honest John!

Its full steam ahead for the Panguna mine reopening, Momis claimed in yesterday’s media release (below).

Its back to the old story – the landowner leaders are behind Rio’s return, only a minority oppose it, and they are in the pay of evil foreigners … unlike being in the pay of good foreigners who help kill 15,000 Bougainvilleans.

And how has he pulled off this post-Xmas coup – the gift of K350,000 to good, representative landowner associations, the ones who support mining may have something to do with it.

As we warned last year, ABG want to have the power to hire and fire landowners at will, and they will use carrots (cash) and sticks (legislation) to do it.

Momis also suggests Rio Tinto cannot possibly compensate Bougainville for past crimes unless their earning money again – ah honest John, Rio Tinto is one of the richest corporations in the world, they have the bill covered, if only a leader – where are they? – had the courage to demand they settle their account.

One other problem, Momis’ plan supposes that BCL are going to reopen the mine, and then honourably throw their hands up and confess to past wrongs, with their wallets open. The President’s faith in Rio Tinto’s humanity is clearly unbreakable.

On a ‘mature’ note, Momis assures his faithful followers – who are primarily AusAID funded – that the ABG will not just rely solely on Panguna to pay for independence – but it is the lynchpin.

Umm, didn’t USAID recently note, the mine wont generate revenue until well after the independence vote. Hard for Panguna revenues to fund independence without ah, revenues.

Then he announces the brave new world – his government is going to search the island for many more mineral reserves and auction them off to foreign investors.

What was it that the ABG said back in March 2013, in a nice little document put together by their AusAID advisor? We are not like PNG, we are not going to auction off our minerals, its too divisive, our environments too important … Panguna is it … maybe one more on top of that … then that’s it.

Lies lies lies lies.

But credit where credit is due, while the strategy to break Bougainville is to divide the people, the ABG is going to unify north, south and central by turning them all into Pangunas.

And funny how all this comes after O’Neill’s symbolic visit – where mining was NOT discussed.

Lots of funny things happen these days.

ABG Media Release

12th February, 2014:

The Autonomous Bougainville Government (ABG) remains fully committed to supporting negotiations regarding the possible reopening of Panguna Mine, said President of the Autonomous Region of Bougainville Chief Dr. John Momis.

President Momis said the ABG reinforced this commitment by allocating from its budget K5 million per year in 2014 and 2015 to continue supporting the process. This is in addition to a specific allocation of K350,000 in infrastructure support for the associations in 2014.

The President issued this statement today at the official opening of the Inaugural Panguna Landowners consultative forum held at the Kuri conference centre, Buka, North Bougainville.

The forum was attended by representatives of the Panguna landowner associations, Bougainville Acting Chief Administrator Mr. Chris Siriosi and Divisional heads of the Bougainville Administration.

President Momis added that at the same time, the ABG is increasingly concerned about the divisive behaviour of a minority of landowner leaders who are pursuing their own political and financial agendas at the expense of landowners and all Bougainvilleans.

“This minority of leaders risk destroying the positive partnership that landowners and the ABG have worked so hard to create and undermine preparations for negotiations with Bougainville Copper Limited and the National Government.

A successful outcome from negotiations is also threatened by the many outsiders who, in alliance with these disruptive leaders or with armed factions, are pursuing their own selfish financial interests”.

President Momis stated also another concern of the ABG.

“The only way in which people’s understandable expectations for compensation and restoration can be achieved is if a profitable project is established at Panguna. This cannot happen if people insist on large compensation payments as a condition for allowing mining to start. Bougainville stakeholders must understand that we need a profitable project before restoration and compensation can occur.”

He said bearing all of this in mind, the ABG must be careful that it does not rely solely on Panguna as its source of revenue for its political future, even though the time frame for the referendum might encourage it do so.

“I have therefore instructed the Bougainville Administration to actively pursue other opportunities that may exist to capitalise on Bougainville’s mineral resources.

“Once Bougainville has its own mining legislation, the ABG will have the power to selectively open geologically promising areas for exploration. Where landowners have indicated their support for development, the ABG intends to grant exploration licences to reputable mining companies, possibly in partnership with landowner associations.”

The President reiterated that the ABG is fully committed to achieving a positive outcome for Panguna Landowners.


Source: Post-Courier

Buka forum discusses mine


A THREE-day consultative and negotiation forum concerning the Panguna mine issue is currently underway in Buka in the Autonomous Region of Bougainville. The forum, which was opened by the Autonomous Bougainville Government President John Momis, is being attended by different stakeholders who are currently involved in talks concerning the future of the mine.

Mr Momis while delivering his speech yesterday said that ABG still remains fully committed to supporting negotiations regarding the possible reopening of Panguna mine. He said its commitment was clearly shown by the establishment of the associations as well as its financial support over the years towards preparations for the negotiations.

This commitment is evident in the allocation of K5 million this year and next year towards the continuity of talks relating to the future of the mine as well as the allocation of K350,000 in infrastructural support for the associations in 2014. Mr Momis said ABG was also increasingly concerned about the divisive behavior of a minority of landowner leaders who are pursuing their own political and financial agendas at the expense of the landowners and Bougainvilleans as a whole.

He said this minority of leaders risk destroying the positive partnership that landowners and ABG have worked so hard to create. He said the successful outcome from these negotiations is also being threatened by some outsiders who have formed alliance with these disruptive leaders or with the armed factions and are pursuing their own selfish financial interests.

The ABG has another concern. The only way in which people’s understandable expectations for compensation and restoration can be achieved if a profitable project is established at Panguna. This cannot happen if people insist on large compensation payments as a condition for allowing the mine to start its operations, said the President. “Bougainville stakeholders must understand that we need a profitable project before restoration and compensation can occur. If you kill the duck, it can’t lay the eggs.

Bearing all these in mind, the ABG must be careful that it does not rely solely on Panguna as its source of revenue for autonomy or independence, even though the time frame for the referendum might encourage it to do so. I have therefore instructed the Bougainville Administration to actively pursue other opportunities that may exist to capitalize on Bougainville’s mineral resources. Mr Momis said once Bougainville has its own mining legislation, then ABG will have the power to selectively open geologically promising areas for exploration.

“Where landowners have indicated their support for development, the ABG intends to grant exploration licenses to refutable mining companies, possibly in partnership with landowner associations. If disruptive behavior of some landowner leaders and outsiders and unreasonable demands for compensations make Panguna unviable, the ABG will then have an alternative source of revenue that Bougainville desperately needs for restoration and development, whether Bougainville votes for independence or autonomy. “I wish to emphasize again that the ABG is fully committed to achieving a positive outcome for Panguna landowners. I call on you to recommit yourself to working closely with the ABG to achieve this goal, and I ask you to encourage those who refuse to attend this meeting to do the same.

Mr Momis however said ABG must also ensure that Bougainvilleans are not held hostage to the fortunes of one project, especially when disruptive landowner leaders and mercenary foreign interests are acting against its success.


Source: Radio New Dawn on Bougainville


By Alex Munme

SIX Bougainville Public Servants have arrived and were welcomed home at the Administration Conference room this morning in Buka, Autonomous Region of Bougainville.

Bougainville Regional Members Office represented by First Secretary, Simon Koraikove officially welcomed the six students on behalf of the Regional Member, Joe Lera.

Mr. Koraikove while welcoming the students said the initiative was a milestone for Bougainville when the first batch of students took the three weeks training at Otago University in New Zealand.

He said they were real ambassadors for Bougainville and has set a strong foundation between Bougainville and New Zealand.

He said the next 12 months will be a big challenge for these Public Servants as they put into good use what they have learnt.

Mr. Koraikove encouraged them to see any challenges during the course of their responsibilities as stepping stones and not obstacles.

He discouraged all negative mindsets by the Public Servants and take on the challenges as stepping stones to move forward in their work.

Mr. Koraikove said the students successfully completed their three weeks training and have gained the knowledge and skills they intended to acquire.

New Dawn FM earlier announced that 15 were confirmed to be on this trip to New Zealand.



Pictured are the six, three males and three females posing for the Alex Munme Picture outside the Administration office.


Source: Post-Courier

Bougainville students return from New Zealand


BOUGAINVILLE students who were sponsored to undergo three weeks of intensive studies at the Otago University in New Zealand returned to Bougainville yesterday. The twelve students were sponsored by the Bougainville Regional MP Joe Lera to undergo studies in management and other topics of importance in preparation for the establishment of Bougainville’s own polytechnic college.

While welcoming the students back into Bougainville yesterday, the Regional MP’s First Secretary, Simon Koraikove, said this was a milestone achievement for the Bougainville Administration following the signing of a memorandum of understanding that paved way for the first batch of students to be sent to New Zealand.

Mr Koraikove said according to reports from Otago, these students have become ambassadors for the region before adding that their performance there has created a strong foundation between Bougainville and the institution. He later reminded the students of the challenges they will face while doing their studies, before encouraging them to see these challenges as stepping stones and not obstacles.

“If you choose to see them as obstacle, then the challenges you will face will be viewed as problems-problems that need to be overcome along with all the negative connotations associated with problems,” Mr Koraikove said. He added that the Regional MP’s Office view challenges as stepping stones that will result in the actualization of Mr Lera’s vision, ‘Develop People and Build the Nation’. Mr Koraikove concluded by challenging the students to make every effort into completing their studies.

“May your years ahead continue to be characterized by empathy, compassion, objectivity and a willingness to take risks while you work with the ABG through the Administration in whatever districts you work in.” Team leader of the students, Ephraim Samuel, thanked Mr Lera for allocating funding towards their studies. He said the knowledge and skills gained will greatly help them in their fields of work.

He also acknowledged those who had made it possible for them to travel to New Zealand including their lecturers at Otago University. Mr Samuel later gave a brief update on their study program saying their first two weeks were centered on document production. This involves the usage of computers to make their work result look more professional.

Topics covered include how to write reports and the types of templates to use to make their reports more professional. The third week saw them doing studies on spreadsheets especially on how to make graphs and statistics, with the latter to be used as a factual backup for the reports contained in graphs.

Apart from these, they also undertook studies in different topics based on how to produce a positive outlook in their workplace, one of these involve the proper way of setting up their offices so that it becomes friendlier to their clients or visitors. Mr Samuel said by June this year they should be completing some of their assignments and emailing them to their lecturers in New Zealand.

He said there are seven levels of courses under their field of studies so by November this year they should be completing their first three levels. Those who successfully complete their courses will continue on with levels 4-7 in order for them to graduate with a degree.

Mr Samuel also shared some of their experiences encountered in New Zealand, before appealing to the heads of each organization they represent to utilize the knowledge and skills gained by the students. Another student, Sharon Pais also shared on her experiences on many issues like time management in comparison to how public servants in Bougainville view the importance of managing time in their workplace.


Source: Radio New Dawn on Bougainville


By Alex Munme

THE Bougainville Regional Member, Joe Lera is paying a total of more than K648, 000 to various Institutions throughout the Country for Bougainville Students attending these institutions in 2014 academic year.

First Secretary for the Regional Member, Simon Koraikove made the announcement this morning at a press conference in Buka, Autonomous Region of Bougainville.

Kabaleo Teachers College gets the highest school fee assistance with K95, 580.00.

Some of these institutions include UPNG, UNITECH LAE, DIVINE WORD, PAU, SONOMA ADVVENTIST COLLEGE, MORAMORA TECHNICAL COLLEGE and others totaling up to 36 institutions altogether.

Meanwhile Mr. Koraikove said funds for school fee assistance for this year have been used up therefore will not take any more applications.




Source: Radio New Dawn on Bougainville


By Alex Munme

THE Senior Provincial Advisor for Elementary Schools in Bougainville, Seddy Palin has challenged teachers at Elementary Schools to properly supervise Elementary School Students.

Mr. Palin said if teachers don’t play their roles properly after leaders have given them classrooms, then they will fail.

Mr.Palin was speaking at the official opening of the two separate buildings to accommodate the literacy classrooms for early childhood training and the elementary classrooms for EP, E1 and E2 at Kotopan Elementary School yesterday in the Halia Constituency on Buka Island, Autonomous Region of Bougainville.

Mr. Palin said supervision as well as teachers attitude is important in order to keep the student in the classroom.

He said teachers need all the time to individually supervise all the students and therefore does not want to see teachers in town at odd times.

He added that many teachers think too much on their fortnightly wages and go to town thus forget to supervise students, which is very bad.

He said human beings can change anytime and if teachers leave school often, they are creating gaps for change in the students therefore must always be available to guide and shape the students.

Mr. Palin said students must be supervised both inside and outside the classroom adding that supervision starts when students enter the school ground.

He said if teachers do not properly supervise the students, they will fail everyone including the student, the parents, the community, the education department and the government.





Source: International Red Cross News Release 14/23

Papua New Guinea: Workshop on people missing since 1989 Bougainville crisis

Port Moresby (ICRC) – About 20 community leaders and representatives of local NGOs, religious organizations, women’s groups and the Panguna Peace Building Strategy Committee came together in Arawa last week for a one-day workshop hosted by the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) and the Papua New Guinea Red Cross.

The aim was to raise awareness of the multitude of problems faced by families of persons who went missing during the Bougainville crisis. Participants also discussed in practical terms how to clarify the fate of the missing, as well as possible avenues to support their families.

The fate and whereabouts of many people who vanished following the outbreak of violence in Papua New Guinea in 1989 remain unknown, causing anguish and uncertainty for families and friends who are often unable to grieve. Some of those who disappeared were breadwinners whose families were left struggling to make ends meet, in some cases even years later.

"If no action on the missing is taken it will hinder the peace process in Bougainville," warned Peter Garawai, paramount chief of Pok Pok Island, who attended the workshop.

Under international humanitarian law, families have the right to be informed of the fate of missing relatives. Governments, military authorities and armed groups have an obligation to provide answers.

Since 2012, the ICRC has been working with the Bougainville and PNG governments to have the issue of the missing included in efforts to promote peace and reconciliation, for example in the Peace and Security Implementation Strategy. "Only the authorities and the people themselves can resolve the issue. The ICRC is here to provide advice and expert support," said Brendan St. John, head of the organization's office in Arawa.

In dozens of countries around the world, the ICRC seeks to ease the suffering of the families of people who have gone missing in connection with armed conflict. "We have witnessed at first-hand how addressing this complex issue can help communities cope with their loss, strengthening peace and reconciliation processes," said Mr St. John. "The families have a right to know what happened, and to have the remains of their loved ones returned."

Two further workshops will be organized by the ICRC and PNG Red Cross in Buka and Buin later this year. Many of the participants, however, agreed that even more such events would be needed throughout Bougainville to raise awareness about the issue and its role as a key component of peace and reconciliation. Some left with the intention of holding their own consultations in their home villages and communities, encouraging the involvement of Village Assemblies and Council of Elders.

"Dealing with the issue of people who went missing in Bougainville – whether as civilians or taking an active part in the fighting – is a must," said Danny Palipal, chairman of the Bougainville branch of the PNG Red Cross. "We have already waited too long."

For further information, please contact:

Ashot Astabatsyan, ICRC Port Moresby, tel: +67 570 880 624

Helen Amnol, ICRC Port Moresby, tel: +67 571 927 175


Source: Mekamui



By Stephanie Elizah

ABG's first trade commissioner Thomas Bockhold is in Bougainville for a two day visit. Mr. Bockhold arrived in Bougainville yesterday, accompanied by his wife Michi Rohr and Bougainville friend Gus Schweinfurth.

In welcoming Mr Bockhold, acting chief administrator Mr Chris Siriosi said Mr Bockhold's visit is a special occasion. Mr Bockhold is ABG's first trade commissioner to Germany. He is based in Berlin.

"It is an important step in the history of Bougainville because we are implementing the requirements of the Bougainville Peace Agreement and the Bougainville Constitution where it gives the privilege, the right and authority to ABG to set up trade commissions throughout the world, in countries where ABG has specific interest to trade." Mr Siriosi said there are many benefits to this arrangement, benefits in tourism, goods and services, education. "We look forward to a good relationship with the government of Germany through our commission", said Mr. Siriosi.



Source: Radio New Dawn on Bougainville

By Aloysius Laukai

The ABG President Chief DR. JOHN MOMIS  fully recognises the significant partnership between the Panguna Landowners and the ABG to move Bougainville into Referendum and into a bright future.
He made these comments at the Launching of a Panguna Landowners forum in Buka this morning. President Momis said that the ABG remains committed to supporting negotiations regarding the possible re-opening of PANGUNA.
President said that the ABG’s commitment in this regard is clearly shown by its establishment of Associations and its financial support over a number of years for preparations for negotiations.
He said that the ABG reinforced this commitment by allocating from its very limited budget FIVE MILLION KINA IN 2014 AND  to continue supporting the process in addition to a specific allocation of THREE HUNDRED FIFTY THOUSAND KINA in infrastructure support to the associations.
At the same time the ABG is increasingly concerned about the divisive behaviour of a minority of landowner leaders who are pursuing their own political and financial agendas at the expense of Landowners and all Bougainvilleans.
President Momis says that these leaders risks destroying the positive partnership that landowners and the ABG have worked so hard to create and undermining preparations for negotiations with BCL and the National Government.
He said that a successful outcome from negotiations is also threatened by the many outsiders who, in alliance with these disruptive leaders or with armed factions, are pursuing their own selfish financial interests.
The President said that the only way in which peoples understandable expectations for compensation and restoration can be achieved is if a profitable project is established in Panguna.
And this cannot happen if people insist in large compensation payments as a condition of allowing mining to start.
He further said that Bougainville stakeholders must understand that we need a profitable project before restoration and compensation can occur, further stating that if we kill the duck, it cannot lay any eggs.





Source: Meekamui


By Augustine Minghai Kinna

The Autonomous Bougainville Government today held a major consultative meeting with the Landowners of Panguna concerning negotiations for the possible reopening of the mine.
President Momis in his remarks during the opening of the Panguna Mine landowner’s consultative workshop in Buka told the conference that the future prosperity of Bougainville is in the hands of individual Bougainvilleans.
Mr Momis says to achievement positive infrastructure developments, there must be unity amongst the leaders and people.
He says for the mine to be reopened the landowners, leaders and the people of Bougainville must put aside their differences and reconcile with one another.
Momis says the first and for most priority of the ABG is to see that equal distribution of service delivery is being provided to the entire population.
President Momis also challenged the leaders and the authorities concern to work hard in developing good systems of laws and policies that can facilitate the process of equal distribution of goods and services to the people.

Source: Radio New Dawn on Bougainville

By Aloysius Laukai

The recent heavy and continuous rains have soften soil on the West Coast of Buka island creating landslips on mountains and destroying food gardens for the locals.
Chiefs from the border of Tonsu and Peit that is villages near Tung Poka and Yagits have experienced many mountain side landslips.
They reported all their problems to the Bougainville Disaster Coordinator, FRANKLYN LACEY who immediately travelled to these sites with reporters to get a up to date information on these natural disasters.


Pictured are mountain side landslips that are visible from a distance.

Close short of the landslip that has destroyed food gardens in the area
Pictures by Lawrence Banae.



Tung village on the West Coast of Buka island where its villagers are affected..

Source: Radio New Dawn on Bougainville

By Alex Munme

KOTOPAN Elementary adds to the list of Elementary Schools to have permanent classrooms under the Elementary Schools Program funded by the Vice President and Member for Halia Constituency in the ABG, Patrick Nisira.
So far under the Elementary School Program, seven Elementary Schools in the Constituency have permanent classrooms and two more are expected under the Halia Members initiative.
Yesterday marked the opening of the schools Elementary three in one classrooms and a Literacy two in one classroom.
The Official Opening was attended by the Vice President, Patrick Nisira, Education Division Senior Provincial Advisor for Elementary Schools in Bougainville, Seddy Palin, Francis Tanapuma representing the Education Minister, John Tabinaman who could not make it due to death in the family and other distinguished guests.
Speaking at the official opening yesterday, the Member for Halia Constituency, Patrick Nisira among other things said without an educated community there is no Autonomy or Independence.
He said an independent community can only be sustained by educated people.
The Vice President said it is his commitment to build permanent classrooms and is concerned on the outcome or result meaning improved standard or level of education from the infrastructures.
He appealed to teachers and the community to provide additional Learning Aids in classrooms to help the students.
The two separate buildings for the Elementary and Literacy classrooms were constructed at the cost of K27, 531.00 and K24, 844.00 respectively.




Source: ESBC

The increasing number of ill-natured comments made by a few anti-mining activists, deranged small local groups or other rancorous opponents of Bougainville Copper Limited and its stakeholders may be a positive sign for ongoing  progress in plans of re-opening the Panguna mine by BCL.



Source: Meekamui News


Media Release/12th February, 2014

By Stephanie Elizah

The Autonomous Bougainville Government (ABG) remains fully committed to supporting negotiations regarding the possible reopening of Panguna Mine, said President of the Autonomous Region of Bougainville Chief Dr. John Momis.
President Momis said the ABG reinforced this commitment by allocating from its budget K5 million per year in 2014 and 2015 to continue supporting the process. This is in addition to a specific allocation of K350,000 in infrastructure support for the associations in 2014.
The President issued this statement today at the official opening of the Inaugural Panguna Landowners consultative forum held at the Kuri conference centre, Buka, North Bougainville.
The forum was attended by representatives of the Panguna landowner associations, Bougainville Acting Chief Administrator Mr. Chris Siriosi and Divisional heads of the Bougainville Administration.
President Momis added that at the same time, the ABG is increasingly concerned about the divisive behaviour of a minority of landowner leaders who are pursuing their own political and financial agendas at the expense of landowners and all Bougainvilleans.
“This minority of leaders risk destroying the positive partnership that landowners and the ABG have worked so hard to create and undermine preparations for negotiations with Bougainville Copper Limited and the National Government.
A successful outcome from negotiations is also threatened by the many outsiders who, in alliance with these disruptive leaders or with armed factions, are pursuing their own selfish financial interests”.
President Momis stated also another concern of the ABG.
“The only way in which people’s understandable expectations for compensation and restoration can be achieved is if a profitable project is established at Panguna. This cannot happen if people insist on large compensation payments as a condition for allowing mining to start.
Bougainville stakeholders must understand that we need a profitable project before restoration and compensation can occur.”
He said bearing all of this in mind, the ABG must be careful that it does not rely solely on Panguna as its source of revenue for its political future, even though the time frame for the referendum might encourage it do so.
“I have therefore instructed the Bougainville Administration to actively pursue other opportunities that may exist to capitalise on Bougainville’s mineral resources.
“Once Bougainville has its own mining legislation, the ABG will have the power to selectively open geologically promising areas for exploration. Where landowners have indicated their support for development, the ABG intends to grant exploration licences to reputable mining companies, possibly in partnership with landowner associations.”
The President reiterated that the ABG is fully committed to achieving a positive outcome for Panguna Landowners.





Source: Radio New Dawn on Bougainville



By Aloysius Laukai


Four Bougainvillean youths are now in Fiji to study Tourism work in the Fiji Islands for the next six weeks.

This Tourism project was announced by the Minister for Tourism, BOKA KONDRA at the Opening of the Bougainville show in Buka last year.

MR. BOKA KONDRA said that from those selected to go to Fiji, Bougainville will have four.

These four participants from Bougainville left for Fiji last week and will return to Bougainville after six weeks.

According to the Regional member for Bougainville, JOE LERA another six Bougainvilleans will be sponsored again for another six weeks.

MR. LERA made this known during his weekly radio program on New Dawn FM.

He said that he intends to send ten students each year and by the end of his five year term he would have trained Fifty people in the area of Tourism and Hospitality.

The first people selected are already involved in the Tourism sector.




Source: Radio New Dawn on Bougainville



By Aloysius Laukai


Tulele Peisa Inc a locally registered NGO group established by the Caterets Council of Elders in 2006 to relocate Carterets Islanders to some parts of mainland Bougainville is seeking to recruit suitably qualified and highly motivated individuals who will be based in Tinputz Office in the following positions.

One, Finance and Accounting officer who will be in charge of collecting receipts, invoices, prepare payments and prepare monthly statements of the organization for donor partners.

Persons wanted must have Grade 12 Certificate with Diploma leading to a Degree Program in accounting with at least three years work experience.

The group also require the service of a Climate Change and Adaptation Co-ordinator who will manage Mini Forest area with Cocoa and Coconut project, Mini research project and other duties.

The requirement here is a Diploma or degree in Forest management.

The last Position is for a Networking and Advocacy Coordinator that will coordinate all information flow on the program activities running.

Persons interested can send their applications to the BOARD CHAIRMAN, MR. ALOYSIUS LAUKAI TULELE PEISA INC, P.O.BOX 495,BUKA OR CALL Digicel number 71191646.

Applications will close Friday 21st, February, 2014.




Source: Radio New Zealand International


Bougainville set to pass public service law next month


The chief administrator of the autonomous Papua New Guinea province of Bougainville says he wants to start making changes to the bureaucracy as soon as enabling legislation is passed.

Chris Siriosi says the ABG Public Service Management and Administration bill is set to be enacted next month.

It will mean the bureaucracy will report to the government in Buka rather than Port Moresby and Mr Siriosi says it will allow the provincial government to set up offices as it sees fit.

He says it is the key element in moving forward with Bougainville's autonomy arrangements.


"On the day the law is passed I will issue instructions to public servants in Bougainville to decide whether they wish to remain with the national public service or if they wish to become members of the new Bougainville public service. That will signal a cut off date when Bougainville will roll out its own salaries from within Bougainville. We have already set up the payroll system here."


Chris Siriosi




Source: Radio New Dawn on Bougainville


Librarian – Position Vacant


The Bougainville Haus Stori based in Arawa is a newly established public library and cultural centre. We are looking to recruit for a Librarian to join our small and dedicated team.

If you are passionate about literacy and learning through library services and have a strong interest in culture and engaging with your local community we would like to hear from you about joining our library team.

As Librarian, you will develop and promote information literacy to customers, local schools and community groups, as well as providing a high level of customer service and offering quality information in response to customer enquiries.

Whilst a relevant qualification is desirable, it is not essential. Experience in a similar customer focused environment is required and good written and spoken Tok Pisin and English are essential.

This role is full-time, permanent and is based at the Haus Stori in Arawa, Bougainville.

To apply please send your CV and covering letter to: or for further information please phone: +675 7044 2476.

Applications close on: Friday 28 February 2014

Apply today for this exciting opportunity and truly unique position.




Source: Papua New Guinea Mine Watch


Miringtoro unaware of Panguna claims

Joy Kisselpar | PNG Edge


The Member for Central Bougainville Jimmy Miringtoro says the demands of “belkol moni” made by the Chief of the Barapang Village of Me’ekamui are silly.

Miringtoro says that he is not aware of the demands of K5 million or K150 million as stated by Chief Blaise Iruini.

He says for now, as the process for reconciliation slowly starts the focus now it is to restore basic government services

“For now we want to concentrate on developing our bridges, fixing our road systems, the hospitals, schools and all that,” he says.

Miringtoro is appealing to his people not to politicise efforts for reconciliation.

He says people should really concentrate, too, on working in partnership with their district representatives both at the local level and national level to ensure that government services are restored without much difficulty.

“Although we have gone through a lot in the past, we must learn to be part of a larger community and the country as we look to a referendum,” says Miringtoro.




Source: Papua New Guinea Mine Watch


O’Neill takes a swipe at Momis for wasting K100m in funding

by ramunickel 


Prime Minister Peter O'Neill has expressed his frustration at the way ABG President John Momis and his Bougainville government have wasted K100 million in funding from the PNG government.

"The national government in 2012 made a commitment to allocate K500 million over a five-year period, to rehabilitate infrastructure throughout Bougainville.

"However, despite the first K100 million funding being released, last year (2013), nothing much has been done there," Mr O'Neill said.

O'Neill  was speaking during an interview on the FM100 Talkback Show in Port Moresby.

Despite the frustration as the lack of progress and meaningful upgrading of infrastructure O'Neill said his government would keep sending the cash.

"The government will continue to honour its commitment in releasing K100 million annually for the remaining four years".

The Prime Minister said the monetary allocation was committed entirely to rehabilitate the rundown infrastructure throughout the region.

He said the funding allocated last year was given to the Autonomous Bougainville Government (ABG) and it is solely responsible for acquitting the funds.




Source: Post-Courier


Arawa hospital takes a tough stand on cleanliness



Hare Erevu is the man leading the cleanliness and hygiene awareness of Arawa hospital.



ARAWA hospital is taking a tough stand to clean and beautify its area by discouraging chewing betelnut and smoking in the hospital premises. And the man behind the hospital’s drive for cleanliness is long time employee Hare Erevu. The man from Kerema has been conducting awareness campaigns in the hospital area, main market at Arawa town and other areas for the public to look after the hospital premises. Mr Erevu said since Dr Joseph Vilosi came to Arawa hospital, he bonded a culture of ownership and urged all to look after the property.

Every fortnight the staff meets with the doctor to address issues affecting the hospital. Since then, the staff with the leadership of Dr Vilosi and Mr Erevu has implemented a ban on chewing betelnut and smoking in the hospital premises. “The ban starts from the hospital staff to the patients and guardians. Visitors must not carry betelnut and smoke on hospital premises. If we come to the hospital we must respect the hospital and not litter and spit betelnut all over the place,” Mr Erevu said.

Mr Erevu is spearheading awareness campaigns and advising people to take ownership and welcome changes that are happening. The hospital is doing this to set some standards and be a model hospital in the region and the changes are already happening at the hospital. “If you want to chew or smoke, go outside of the hospital premises and do your thing. This is a hospital and we are dealing with sick people, we look after and serve patients; the environment in and outside must be clean at all times. Every day I do awareness and if people do not adhere to my awareness, there is a fine of K5.”

Mr Erevu said the scope of work at the hospital premises has been done by government authorities whereby two permanent rest houses will be built, one at the outpatient and one for the pathology and x-ray lab. Apart from hospital health and hygiene, Mr Erevu who is a pharmacist dispenser does other awareness campaigns on blood donation, types of services provided by Dr Vilosi, the safety of health workers especially nurses, drunks not allowed in the hospital premises and overdosing.




Source: Bougainville24


Climate change a threat to native vegetable

By Leonard Fong Roka


Siokau: The escaping vegetable.


Positioned on the Crown Prince Range, the mountain backbone of Bougainville, the Kupe villages are cold and its climate has sustained the creeping vegetable referred to as choko and known locally as siokau.

Siokau has been the staple vegetable for the Kupe people and it was also the major cash earner for mothers in the villages.

“I was born into the siokau world of Kupe in the 1970s,” Meto jokes with seriousness, “but that world is no more.”

“Before and through the crisis Kupe lived on choko and was one of the many villages that supplied Arawa with the creeping vegetable.”

“But today, where once choko prevailed, it is all grass that we cannot consume. Our choko is fast dying out.”

Climate change is not only a nightmare on the atolls but also on the mainland of Bougainville.

For the Kupe people proof of climate change is with the rapid decline of siokau right in front of them, just as the people of the Carteret’s can see their islands submerging in to the Pacific Ocean.

“I grew up watching our women knap-sacking huge bags of siokau to Arawa, before the crisis, to feed the mine workers,” Meto continued.

“Big fields of siokau were known across Kupe that covered hectares of land areas alongside cold mountain streams and rivers.”

Kupe was the supplier for warmer downstream areas of the Bovong Valley with its many siokau fields such as Papenang, Kano, Mororiorami, Dakau, Koromoni, Kompuma, Siro and Iburai.

“All our siokau fields today are all unwanted grass,” Meto told me, “there are only tiny plots in shady areas along water sources in much higher altitudes.”

“These spots are well protected and trespassing is fined by the landowners.”

“Long ago siokau was free in Kupe, one just went into the huge fields of siokau and collected for sale or consumption.”

The problem was first noticed around the early 1990s. Places where the coconut palm never had fruit before, they began to bare nuts.

The regional population growth is also means more mouths to feed in Kupe, which has also contributed to the fade of siokau.

The Kupe people think in a few years siokau will be a legend to pass onto their children.




Source: Radio New Zealand International


Bougainville administrator wounded in attack


The deputy town manager in Bougainville's Arawa, Peter Miriki, was admitted to the Arawa Health Centre last Friday with serious knife wounds in his left arm.

Mr Miriki was attacked by a group of men when he was travelling to work in the autonomous Papua New Guinea province.

The men, who were armed with knives and guns, stopped his work vehicle and attacked him.

New Dawn FM quotes Dr Joseph Vilosi, who treated Mr Miriki, saying he was lucky the knife missed a major artery.

The motive for the attack is unknown.




Source: Post-Courier


New technical college set to take in students



THE newly established Bougainville Technical College will be enrolling its first students starting this year. The college, which is located at the former Tinputz Vocation School area in the Tinputz District of North Bougainville, will start off its classes with 136 students. The institution was initially launched in 2012 by the then Minister for Education Paru Aihi was supposed to have began offering technical courses last year but this did not take place as planned. According to the acting registrar of the college, Pasko Walter, they will commence with the weeklong registration of students starting on February 10 while classes are set to commence the following week.

Mr Walter said they have already selected 103 students that have completed their grade 12 at the four secondary schools in Bougainville last year. These shortlisted students are urged to report to the school for an admission of application interview before the 10th of February. Those who fail to adhere to this instruction will not be allowed to enroll at the school. Mr Walter said the selected students will undergo a two year study program in various courses that will be offered before graduating with their diploma certificates in 2015. Courses include carpentry, business studies, tourism and hospitality, welding and metal fabrication.

“Hopefully by 2015 we will include electrical, agriculture and fisheries studies,” said Mr Walter. Mr Walter said all teaching postings are ready and only awaiting the endorsement from the TVET office in Port Moresby. “According to the proposed positions from TVET, we should have 38 staff, but it looks like we will start off with 10 staff. “We are facing the challenge of finding the starting point for the new institution here in Bougainville, which is a tertiary institution that will be offering a two year diploma program,” Mr Walter said.

Acting chief executive officer for the Division of Education in Bougainville Michael Meten also confirmed that Bougainville Technical College will begin its classes starting this year. He said the TVET section of the Education Department had advised that the college governing body will set the tuition fees to be paid by students however this will be less then what the other technical colleges around the country are charging. The commencement of the Bougainville Technical College will now prevent Bougainville students from traveling out of the region to pursue technical studies.

MP backs Bougainville music




Source: Post-Courier


JUNTAU hits the drums for Lost Tribes at the Bel Isi Park events company  launch.



A NEWLY established music events organisation received a boost from North Bougainville MP Lauta Atoi this week. Bougainville Music Events and Tours, headed by legendary Bougainville guitarist Bernard Hanga, was recently set up with the financial help of the MP to stimulate the Bougainville music industry. The MP allocated K100,000 for the purchase of a public address system and a full set of band instruments.

The organisation and its equipment was launched  on Wednesday at Buka’s Bel Isi Park by the MP. Also present were members of the Autonomous Bougainville Government and other stakeholders. Mr Atoi is a big music fan and provided the support in order to help grow the Bougainvillean music industry. It is a chance to help live musicians in his constituency further their musical aspirations.

Hanga wants to see the once-vibrant Bougainville live music scene revitalised. This is a vision he shares with the MP. “He grew up with my music,” said Mr Hanga. “He used to watch me play when I was a young guitarist.” “Many young people today are creating music on computers and don’t have the knowledge or skills to perform their songs live. Hanga sees this as killing off the live music scene. “I don’t think it’s very healthy and the MP is sensitive about this.”




Source: Bougainville24


JPNCC push for local training and employment


The first meeting of the Joint Panguna Negotiation Coordination Committee (JPNCC) for 2014 was held in Port Moresby on Wednesday 22 January.

The meeting involved discussions on a number of matters relating the potential return of Bougainville Copper Limited (BCL) to the autonomous region.

The JPNCC consists of representatives of mine affected landowners, the Autonomous Bougainville Government (ABG), the Government of Papua New Guinea and BCL.

At the meeting the members of the JPNCC expressed a shared desire for significant landowner participation in employment around any return of BCL to Panguna and the activities that precede this.

Vocational training for employment will need to be carried out and the JPNCC will look to work closely with the ABG Division of Education, which is currently in the process of rolling out education programmes across Bougainville.

One of the first areas of employment would be support and services for the implementation of the environmental, social and economic baseline studies that are overseen by the JPNCC.

Discussions also took place on the process of bel kol, a customary conflict resolution process of remorse and redress between two parties.

BCL is keen, provided it is safe and acceptable to the landowners, to open an Arawa office following bel kol.

This office would also create several local jobs, including positions for liaison officers to the nine mine affected landowner areas.

The JPNCC will continue to meet throughout 2014, rotating between Port Moresby and Buka.




Source: Papua New Guinea Mine Watch


The ABG learnt well from PNG’s Defence Force

by ramunickel 


Is there a line the ABG government wont cross in its campaign to reopen the mine? A new argument increasingly being employed by the ABG, and fed into the public through its officialdom, is that the people of Panguna have a customary obligation to compensate the rest of Bougainville for their support during the war – as a result they are obliged, so the argument goes, to reopen the mine and relinquish customary rights over their land.

In effect a blood debt is now being placed on the people of Panguna by the ABG to force them into doing something they oppose and know is wrong.

Expect to see more of this nasty little tactic being used by ABG, its friends in the media and even the self-appointed Chiefs backing Rio Tinto’s return.

They all have learnt well from their PNG masters, who used the exact same style of divisive tactics, with the help of loyal friends on Bougainville, in order to break the BRA. Turn the north and south against central Bougainville, destroy the island’s unity, and sow the seeds of internal rupture.

Now it is the ABG’s turn as it finds itself more and more on the back foot, just like PNG was on the back foot when they turned to divide and conquer tactics.

Worryingly it would seem even the member for Central Bougainville has been co-opted...


Aloysius Laukai | New Dawn

The ABG member for Central Bougainville representing the women of Central Bougainville JOAN JEROME today called on the Prime Minister, PETER O’NEILL support the work of reconciliations throughout Bougainville.

The member was supposed to have delivered her speech in Arawa during the Prime Minister’s visit revealed this during a press conference in Buka this morning.

She said that Bougainville needs to complete reconciliations throughout Bougainville before they can talk on re-opening the Panguna mine.

MS. JEROME said that to make this happen more funds are needed from the National government as the ABG had no extra funds for these activities.

She said that it was good for the Prime Minister to visit Bougainville and see for himself what is needed to get Bougainville back on her feet again.

The ABG member said that the PANGUNA mine was now owned by the people of Bougainville and not just the landowners as blood was spilled for this piece of land and these fighters must be compensated for the part they played to protect PANGUNA.

She said that it was a pity they changed the program and she did not speak at the Arawa gathering.




Source: ABC Radio Australia News


A PNG lesson in going with the flow

by Liam Cochrane


The ABC's new correspondent in PNG got a taste of the vibrant colour and - at times - chaos of life on the road in the Land of the Unexpected. Liam Cochrane followed the PNG prime minister on an historic trip to Bougainville, an autonomous island to the east of Papua New Guinea that has been plagued by war and neglect. From baking heat to pouring rain, from being right in the thick of it to being completely left out, it was quite an initiation.




ELIZABETH JACKSON: The ABC's new correspondent in PNG (Papua New Guinea) got a taste of the vibrant colour and, at times, chaos of life on the road in the Land of the Unexpected.


Liam Cochrane followed the PNG prime minister on a historic trip to Bougainville, an autonomous island to the east of Papua New Guinea that has been plagued by war and neglect.


From baking heat to pouring rain, from being right in the thick of it to being completely left out, it was quite an initiation.


From PNG, here's Liam Cochrane.


LIAM COCHRANE: I've spent some hot days under the Cambodian sun, but standing around filming the reconciliation ceremony at Buka, in northern Bougainville, was just about as sweltering as I've ever experienced.


Sure it was hot, but the humidity was intense. A few steps away a Papua New Guinean cameraman was feeling it too, beads of sweat dripping down his face, his shirt plastered to his back. Meanwhile the local Bougainvillian reporters, with their deep black skin, didn't to seem to notice the heat at all.


Someone handed me a bottle of water and probably saved me from heat stroke, as the speeches and ceremonies went on for about four hours.


I was one of 10 reporters and cameramen from the PNG mainland who had flown over to Bougainville to witness an historic visit by prime minister Peter O'Neill.


He was the first sitting PM to tour the autonomous island since the end of the civil war in 1997, and this trip was part of a long overdue reconciliation effort.


The logistics of such a trip were daunting but the basic idea was that once on Bougainville, the prime minister and other VIPs would take helicopters from place to place and the media would scramble across the island in two four wheel drives.


In Buka, the two leaders - Peter O'Neill representing PNG and John Momis, the president of Bougainville - broke a bow and arrow over their knees to symbolize the end of hostilities. Special peacemaker chiefs known as maimais stripped down to red sarongs and made loud proclamations of reconciliation, overseeing exchanges of gifts like traditional shell money, real cash, pigs and vegetables.


Bamboo bands played - slapping thongs on the end of bamboo pipes - while women in grass skirts danced. It was all very colourful. And so was I by the end of the day, a not-so traditional or attractive shade of pink.


After dark, a boat took us across to the main part of Bougainville. We met up with our police escort and off we drove to the central town of Arawa.


The next day, an early start to get to the southern town of Buin. There, the cultural groups were even more elaborately decorated. Men in pointy hats painted like skeletons were quite spooky-looking. Another group of men played bamboo pan pipes while they followed warriors dancing ahead with long spears, their heads wrapped in light brown bark, with holes for eyes and mouth.


Peter O'Neill and John Momis arrived and were ushered onto a huge sedan chair, hoisted onto the shoulders of dozens of men and paraded through the main street of Buin to the stage.


The speeches and cultural events that followed were met with a steady rain, but hundreds of locals stayed to listen to Peter O'Neill apologise for the conflict in the past, and to hear his offers of millions of dollars for new roads and other development projects.


I took shelter in the car with my camera gear, which soon became a little sauna, surrounded by the spooky skeleton men in their spiky hats. It was surreal - sort of like that scene in Titanic, but without Kate Winslet and directed by David Lynch.


The rain was even heavier further north and the rivers swelled. Our drive back to the central town of Arawa came to a halt as we forded a river, the water going over the bonnet and into the engine, which died.


Rolling up our trousers, we pushed the four-wheel drive to the other side of the river and our media team became bush mechanics. Before long they had the car going but it was pouring out white smoke and sounding a bit sick.


On the third and final day of the trip, it was the big one - the visit to the controversial Panguna mine. When it started in the 1970s this Australian-run gold and copper mine was the biggest in the world, but disputes over environmental damage and compensation led to conflict, which soon morphed into a struggle for independence and a civil war between Bougainville and Papua New Guinea.


The visit to the mine was scheduled for the afternoon but I was woken at 6:45am and told I had 10 minutes to pack and jump in the car - we're off to Panguna, the PM's chopper is leaving, we have to go NOW! A mad scramble: get in the car, tear off to the police station. There's nobody there. We tear off to the market. There's still no sign of our police escort.


Two hours later, we were off.


We pass the rusty 'No-Go Zone' sign at the roadblock, maintained by the hardline faction the Me'ekamui. The ceremony is held in the shadow of what was once a three story building, the living quarters for single women when the mine was operating but now a burnt out ruin.


Ex-combatants stood side by side with police to manage security, while 20 members of the Me'ekamui march and stand to attention in faded brown fatigues.


I'd been told that as soon as the speeches were over, we had to rush to the cars and drive ahead to set up for the PM's tour of the mine pit. This was it, the shots I had come for. I'd been told it was 20 years since the ABC had gained access to the Panguna mine. As the car climbed, the mine came into view and we stopped for a wide shot - I set up the tripod, got three shots and was back in the car two minutes later.


As we drove I went over what I was going to say in my piece to camera and made a mental note of the sort of shots I wanted to get inside the mine pit. And then, the road looked sort of familiar. 'Guys, where are we going? We're not going back to Arawa are we?'


We were going back to Arawa. At some point the plan had changed and the visit to the mine pit had been called off. But nobody mentioned that until it was too late and we were speeding back past the road block, away from the shots that were central to the story I'd constructed in my head.


Those three wide shots were all I had of the mine itself.


But that's how it goes. If Papua New Guinea is The Land of the Unexpected, I was 930 kilometres east of there and this, my first trip off-base as the new PNG correspondent, was a lesson in going with the flow. Plans change, time is fluid. That's how it is. This is Bougainville. This is Papua New Guinea. This is my new reality.


ELIZABETH JACKSON: And that was the ABC's new PNG correspondent Liam Cochrane.




Source: Meekamui











Thank you Master of Ceremonies,


First I would like to extend a warm welcome to the Hon Prime Minister and thank him for accepting our invitation to visit Panguna today. I would also like to personally thank the Hon. Jimmy Miringtoro Member for Central Bougainville and Minister for Communications for his assistance in bringing about this historic meeting.

The Hon Prime Minister, National Government Ministers and Officials, ABG President, Ministers and Government Officials, Council of Elders of the Meekamui Panguna Land Owners, Church and Community Leaders, Police Officers, District Administration Offices, the Meekamui Defence Force, Women, Students and our beautiful young children of Panguna.

Today is a very significant day. It is significant because we the Meekamui remember our mothers, fathers, sisters and brothers who lost their lives fighting for a better life for the people of Panguna and customary landowners of Bougainville. It is significant because we focus on our future whilst remembering our past. It is significant because we the Me’ekamui, announce to the Hon PM of PNG and the world at large our intention to formally conclude the civil conflict that existed between Bougainville and PNG and most of all it is significant because we make peace and reconciliation the foundation of our future.

It is well known that the Meekamui through our then human rights leader, Francis Ona supported the peace process but did not sign the peace agreement because the terms for peace were never consented to by all our Council of Elders. I am afraid to say Prime Minister, that peace was secured for the people of Bougainville but a future for our people was not.

Hon Prime Minister many of the problems faced by the Meekamui when peace was secured still exist today and will continue until we find a solution.

To assist you understand the problems faced by our people it is important to consider our history. After World War II, the territories of Papua and New Guinea were placed in Australia’s trust under the United Nations International Trusteeship system. Australia’s powers over our territories were the same legislative, administrative, jurisdictional powers that Australia held over its own territories, however these powers were limited by clear obligations to;

take into consideration the customary rights of Territory inhabitants

respect indigenous peoples rights and interests

prevent the granting of rights over native land to non-indigenous people except without the consent of the competent public authority.

Australia set up a public authority and this Administration granted between 1963 and 1965 several prospecting licences to CRA (now Rio Tinto). Successful exploration led to the Bougainville Copper Act which was legislated by the Administration in 1967 and subsequent granting of the Special Mining Lease in 1969.

We submit that the legislation and the granting of the leases was contrary to the clear obligations imposed upon the Australian Administration as Trustee. At the time, we tried to bring a claim in the High Court of Australia to prevent these actions but we were unsuccessful and this was the beginning of the injustice suffered by the Bougainville people.

In 1975, following Australia’s withdrawal as sovereign, Papua New Guinea became an independent State and adopted the Bougainville Copper Act 1967 with some amendments, which were adopted in 1974. Michael Somare, who was elected Chief Minister in 1972 became our first Prime Minister and assumed the responsibility for the people of Bougainville.

The Bougainville Provincial Government was formally established in 1974 to administer Bougainville as a province of PNG. To quell Bougainville’s calls for secession, Chief Minister Somare promised the provincial government that it would receive 95% of Panguna Mine’s royalties in addition to an effective veto power over further mineral exploration. A failure to fulfil these promises and a failure to increase the income of the mine’s affected peoples resulted in greater disaffection within Bougainville’s government and population.

The Panguna mine commenced production in 1972 and was a huge success for PNG. Tax revenues from the mine contributed 17% of internally generated government revenue, the value of minerals exported made up 44% of PNG’s exports, and PNG secured a 19% ownership stake in Bougainville Copper Limited which it continues to hold today. The mine however was a disaster for the people of Bougainville and in 1981 attempts to renegotiate the 1974 Agreement failed in the early stages. PNG rejected Bougainville’s demand for all or part of PNG’s equity, a greater share of tax revenue collected, an increase in the nominal royalty paid and an increase in the Non-Renewable Resource Fund levy.

The failure of PNG to negotiate meant that PNG prospered at the expense of the people of Bougainville and this inequality ultimately led to the Conflict that erupted in 1989.

As you can see from your visit today the damage suffered by our people is clear and has been well documented;

The Jaba River is poisoned.

Our people were relocated with a complete disregard for their needs and the needs of future generations.

We lost our land.

We were displaced from our homes by a Trustee appointed to ensure our protection and we were denied natural justice and compensation from a newly government appointed to represent our interests.

We now live in the ruins of the mine, our children require better education and our community requires better access to social services and infrastructure.

We the Tribal Government of the Meekamui, believe that the quality of any civilisation is measured by the way in which it protects its civilian rights, the way in which it cares for its sick and the way in which it educates its young people.

In Bougainville our Police Service suffers from a shortage of manpower, logistics and financial support.

In Panguna the Health Clinic is unmanned most of the time. We have no secondary schooling or technical college for our young people.

As President of the Meekamui it is my responsibility to work with you Prime Minister and all stakeholders to ensure that all of these services are improved quickly.

It is for this reason that I would like to acknowledge my personal appreciation for your visit to Panguna today.

Ladies and Gentlemen please join with me in showing our heartfelt appreciation to Prime Minister O’Neil for being the first Prime Minister to visit the Meekamui and the people of Panguna since the Conflict.

[Please everybody give a big Bougainville clap]

The Prime Minister should be acknowledged……. The establishment of meaningful dialogue between the Meekamui and the Prime Minister is essential if we are to achieve a better community for all our people.

The Tribal Government of the Meekamui would like to take this opportunity to assure the Prime Minister that we are not anti- business or anti-mining. The Meekamui are only interested in building a better community for our people and guaranteeing a bright future for our children. It is this commitment to our people and our future that stops us from repeating the mistakes of the past and ensures that our focus is entirely upon our future.

Prime Minister we have a historic opportunity to build a better Bougainville and a better and more equitable PNG that is defined by our future actions and not by our past. We have an opportunity to work together to ensure that our people will prosper and I am very excited to work with you on this historic project.

Ladies and Gentlemen shortly after this meeting the Leaders of the Meekamui and our advisers will join the Prime Minister in historic talks to build a better Bougainville. It is my hope that this meeting will provide a framework for future meetings with the Prime Minister and his advisers that will deliver the necessary services to protect our citizens rights, care for our sick and educate our young.

I would once again like to take this opportunity to thank him for his visit, may God bless you Prime Minister, our people and our beautiful country.







Source: PNG Attitude


O’Neill’s Panguna visit: how the opportunists were thwarted



Peter O'Neill in BougainvilleIN 2012, Central Bougainville politician Jimmy Miringtoro and Papua New Guinea Prime Minister Peter O’Neill were chatting in O’Neill’s office in Parliament House, Port Moresby, when the PM unexpectedly suggested he was interested in visiting Bougainville.

It wasn’t until late January 2014 that the proposal took form and the pair landed at Buka airport in a chartered jet, touring Bougainville for three days in a convoy of cars with three helicopters buzzing around in the skies above.

Late last year, as he was preparing the way for O’Neill’s visit, Miringtoro told the Panguna people that the trip would be a ‘family visit’. It was the Autonomous Bougainville Government (ABG) administration that came up with the more far reaching idea of a ‘goodwill visit’.

Across central Bougainville, many people think some of Miringtoro’s actions in recent times have gone well outside what should have been the responsibility of the ABG. One of these was a Panguna landowners’ deal for an agricultural investment by Chinese firm, Beijing Aerospace Great Wall.

The ABG was shocked by the deal, signed at the Lynchar Hotel in Buka town late in 2013, and wondered what other surprises Jimmy Miringtoro might have in store.

But Waigani’s respect for the authority of Bougainville president Dr John Momis made it clear that even Miringtoro had to play along with the protocol of the ABG taking responsibility for the visit.

Before the ABG took over the PM’s tour, however, arrangements Miringtoro had made with the divided Meekamui factions had created a tussle in Panguna - money and recognition being the catalysts.

Today, the self-style Meekamui ‘government’ in central Bougainville is a divided band of individuals striving for status. In Panguna there is a Meekamui group led by Philip Miriori who, together with Moses Pipiro from Pangka village, claim a line of leadership from the late Francis Ona.

But Guava villagers condemn them and say Ona died without any official announcement that Miriori or Pipiro should be leader.

Meanwhile, down on the east coast is Chris Uma from Kerei outside Arawa, the man who runs the Morgan Junction checkpoint on the Loloho port – Panguna mine-access road. Uma’s right to rule, he claims, was also bestowed upon him by Ona.

Uma is not a Panguna man but has followers in the mine affected areas. Uma, whose group bear arms, is a power in the area. But, whereas Miriori and Pipiro have a hatred of the ABG, Uma follows and respects the Panguna Peace Building Strategy, which he says upholds the principles Bougainville went to war for.

Uma’s growing harmony with the ABG through the PPBS means Miriori and Pipiro are sidelined by the Panguna people. They saw Peter O’Neill’s visit to Bougainville as an event that somehow could be manipulated to restore their influence in the eyes of the people.

So, without the knowledge of the Meekamui and in a surprise move, they took steps to support the ABG’s Panguna District Administration invitation to O’Neill to visit Panguna with the financial support of Jimmy Miringtoro and the ABG.

Thus Panguna was designated for a visit by Peter O’Neill by a few people without the rest knowing. When they found out, this shocked Chris Uma and the people of Panguna.

Seeing the threat, Pipiro and Miriori began a media campaign saying that the PM was welcome at Panguna, but their about-face led them to being shamed by Uma and his followers.

And Uma took action. In the fortnight leading to O’Neill’s arrival, he was on the road seeking support from other men to stop the PM visiting Panguna, by words or guns, whichever they chose.

People were divided. So the Panguna organising committee came to Uma’s followers with K15,000 if he and his allies allowed the visit.

Uma refused the cash leading to more ABG ministers joining behind the scenes to negotiate a solution. Eventually nearly K40,000 was spent to allow the Peter O’Neill to visit Panguna.

The final meeting ended at 3am on 29 January only when O’Neill’s team personally got involved and promised to uphold the belkol or, in Nasioi language, domangtamiri - a process towards peace and compensation after conflict resulting in destruction and death.

 Peter O'Neill, John Momis and Chris Uma (Mekamui News)So it was that Peter O’Neill visited Panguna and met with Chris Uma as he drove from Panguna to Arawa by vehicle.

So the rewards of the visit were not with Philip Miriori and Moses Pipiro.

Earlier the Panguna people had heard, wrongly, from Meekamui followers that the prime minister was visiting Panguna to recognise Meekamui as a legitimate tribal government. The Meekamui leaders also wanted O’Neill to have a private moment with them.

But O’Neill made Miriori and Pipiro laughing stocks in the midst of the Panguna people and Bougainville.

In his Panguna speech, O’Neill announced, as Miriori looked on shocked, “The ABG is the only legitimate government in Bougainville. Meekamui you have come under ABG and work as one Bougainville people to bring about development and progress in Bougainville.”

After the official program, Miriori approached O’Neill but was told the PM had no time for discussion.

O’Neill’s visit to Bougainville was important and influential. It empowered the ABG as the legitimate government standing for the rights of the people of Bougainville. It further exposed the little warlords in central Bougainville as trying to hold the Bougainville people to ransom. 




Source: Radio New Dawn on Bougainville



By Chris Baria in Arawa


Photo: Credit Chris Baria


The Deputy town Manager of Arawa Town Mr. Peter Miriki, has been admitted to the Arawa Health Centre with a serious knife wounds to his left arm.

Mr. Miriki was travelling to work on Friday morning when a group of men armed with knives, grass knives and firearms stopped his work vehicle and attacked him. He sustained a deep cut to his upper left arm which barely missed the main nerve and motor control system to his hand.

Dr. Joseph Vilosi who treated him said that PETER MIRIKI was in stable condition and was lucky that knife missed his main artery of the hand.

The motive for this attack is unknown but Arawa Police have identified those who were involved in his attempted murder.

A fight nearly erupted between parties who tried to defend Peter from further attacks.

Sergeant Herman Burenka who is incharge of the Arawa Police Station said that the situation was under control and he had appealed for calm from relatives.

Police did manage to get the Town Council that was taken from Peter during the attack.

Police are investigating this incident.




Source: Radio New Dawn on Bougainville



By Alex Munme


PRESTINE 101 Copra Mill is now preparing to export its first shipment of crude oil to Asia and Europe.

The Copra Mill’s Consultant, Joseph Watawi said this on New Dawn FM Top Show this morning in Buka, Autonomous Region of Bougainville.



Mr. Watawi said since coming into full operation on December 19, 2013, 10 containers weighing 20 metric tones each and totaling upto about 200 Metric tones of Crude Oil has been produced and is now being prepared to be shipped to overseas markets.

He said Stock Feed out of copra is another product and the first shipment has been exported in January to Markham in Morobe Province and New Zealand although they planned for March or April 2014.

Mr. Watawi said Copra Price now stands at 85 toea per Kilo or K85 per bag and the price is expected to increase depending on the outcome of the first Crude Oil export.

He is strongly appealing to farmers to properly dry their copra as well as not to add foreign matter in the bags when coming to sell so that quality is maintained

Discussions are underway for price stability when Copra Price drops, Mr. Watawi said.

The Consultant said ABG benefits from the 10 percent General Sales Tax or GST from the purchase of Spare Parts to operate the factory.

He added that Export levy fee unfortunately goes to KIK as ABG has no Commodity Board to regulate this but KIK will pay some money back for research and extension work.


Pictured are Ten Containers of Crude Oil from the Buka Copra Mill ready for Export to Europe and Asia




Source: Radio New Dawn on Bougainville



By Aloysius Laukai


Two Chinese Nationals and a local Bougainvillean man are in hospital following a nasty road accident on the Port Mine Acces Road yesterday afternoon.

These three men were transport Scrap Metal from Panguna down to the Loloho wharf for shipment to overseas markets when their Truck loaded with Scrap Metals failed to slow down due to failed Breaking system.

The driver a Chinese National managed to steer the truck on high speed for some time until he could no longer hold on.

According to Eye witnesses the truck hit a stone and rolled for several time before stopping.

The three passengers were lucky to be alive but are in serious condition at the Buka General Hospital.

They were rushed to the Arawa Health Centre yesterday and taken to Buka this morning.




On the boat to Buka Hospital  -  Pictures by Lawrence Banae


Chinese Nationals involved in the Car Accident near Panguna yesterday. They are being brought to the Nation.

Pictures were taken at the Kokopau boat shed.




Source: Radio New Dawn on Bougainville


By Aloysius Laukai


The ABG member for Central Bougainville representing the women of Central Bougainville JOAN JEROME today called on the Prime Minister, PETER O’NEILL support the work of reconciliations throughout Bougainville.

The member was supposed to have delivered her speech in Arawa during the Prime Minister’s visit revealed this during a press conference in Buka this morning.

She said that Bougainville needs to complete reconciliations throughout Bougainville before they can talk on re-opening the Panguna mine.

MS. JEROME said that to make this happen more funds are needed from the National government as the ABG had no extra funds for these activities.

She said that it was good for the Prime Minister to visit Bougainville and see for himself what is needed to get Bougainville back on her feet again.

The ABG member said that the PANGUNA mine was now owned by the people of Bougainville and not just the landowners as blood was spilled for this piece of land and these fighters must be compensated for the part they played to protect PANGUNA.

She said that it was a pity they changed the program and she did not speak at the Arawa gathering.




Source: Radio New Dawn on Bougainville


By Aloysius Laukai


The ABG member representing the women of Central Bougainville, MS JOAN JEROME (pictured) today supported the commitment made by Prime Minister PETER O’NEILL to re-open the closed AROPA INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT in Central Bougainville.



She made these comments in a Press Conference in Buka this morning.

Member JEROME said that Central Bougainville was a more central location for these important infrastructures to be re-established as people from South have to spend all day travelling to Buka and this takes days during rainy seasons.

The member said the ABG needs to make some funds available to support this commitment by the Prime Minister to make sure this happens this year.

MS. JEROME said that ARAWA was slowly being built and services like the Hospital needs to be rebuilt to meet this growing demand for services in the region.




Source: Radio New Dawn on Bougainville


By Alex Munme


THE Bougainville Chief Administrator, Chris Siriosi says Bougainville does not need a big Administrative Setup and will centralize all key functions.

The Chief Administrator said this on New Dawn FM’s Bougainville Administration Update Program which goes on air once every week.

One of The Chief Administrator’s objectives is the Public Sector Reforms which sees the realigning of the Administrative Machinery and the Political Leadership.

He said stream lining of supportive and critical key functions is necessary saying there is no need for each department to have its own IT section, Finance section, Legal office and System of Human Resource and so on.

Mr. Siriosi wants to make adjustments to the Administrative Organization of the ABG so that limited resources are used wisely and money saved for other developments and service delivery, he said.




Source: Radio New Dawn on Bougainville


By Aloysius Laukai


The Bougainville Acting Chief Administrator, CHRIS SIRIOSI left Buka for Port Moresby today to follow up with the National Government on commitments made by the Prime Minister in his first official visit to Bougainville.

The Acting Chief Administrator, revealed this on his weekly radio Program on New Dawn FM last night.

He said the commitments by the Prime Minister needs to be followed to make sure they come to reality.

MR. SIRIOSI said that the Prime Minister has made several road upgrading and sealing commitments, starting with the Buka Ring Road, the Kokopau to Arawa sealing and the Arawa to Buin road sealing.

The sealing of Buka and Buin town streets whilst the Kangu to Buin town sealing will be funded by the Member for South Bougainville, Steven Pirika.

In other commitments made by the Prime Minister in Arawa, the Arawa Post Office will be opened on February 17th, 2014.

Preparations are underway for the Arawa Post Office Opening.




Source: Radio New Dawn on Bougainville


By Aloysius Laukai


The Buin District women’s Federation will be holding its fundraising at Club Rendevouz tonight to raise funds to complete their Resource Centre in Buin, South Bougainville.

Women leaders, MRS AISA and MISS SIRU told New Dawn FM’s Talk Back Show yesterday that they have started building their resource centre but need some more funds to complete it this year.

They said that they will be having a BBQ in the morning and later will continue with a fundraising Dance.

They are charging FIFTEEN KINA fees for men and women will pay TEN KINA.

The women leaders are also calling on all South Bougainvilleans to support their fundraising drive.




Source: Radio New Dawn on Bougainville


By Aloysius Laukai


The original landowner of the Ten Acres of land to be used by the Bougainville Soccer Federation, Chief NEBASI has supported the establishment of the Soccer Academy on his land.

He told New Dawn FM at the weekend that he had bought the land from the KOKOMO clan using traditional land acquisition process and later gave the land to NICHOLAS DARKU in 1981 and he registered it in 1985 to plant cocoa trees.

The Chief said that he was happy for NICK DARKU to start up something that could create employment for his people which was one of his plans of selling the land to him.

Chief NEBASI said that this land was later divided into three parts, the northern part was given to his nephew, Nick Darku was given the middle section whilst he still has the southern end of the land.

He said that he has no complaints or regrets but wants to see some real development in this area.




Source: Post-Courier

Airlines PNG arrives in Buka



Airlines PNG are pleased to announce the arrival of their inaugural service to Buka. 

The touchdown just after 1PM today marked the first flight by Airlines PNG linking Kokopo and Buka.

"Today is a real milestone for Airlines PNG and we are pleased to be able to provide this 5 days a week service to the people of Bougainville." said Paul Abbot, Chief Commercial Officer Airlines PNG.

"The demand for the service has been overwhelming and we thank all those who have got in behind the airline and supported this expansion to our network.

From today the service links Buka with Kokopo, Kavieng and Lae which will provide much needed support for local businesses and for families keeping contact with their loved ones".


Source: Radio New Dawn on Bougainville


By Aloysius Laukai


The ABG Minister for Community Development and member for EIVO TORAU, MELCHIOR DARE has praised his colleague Minister for Primary Industry and Member for North Nasioi, NICHOLAS DARKU for his part in giving his land to the Bougainville Soccer Academy in Manetai, Central Bougainville.

MR. DARE made these comments at the ground breaking ceremony in Manetai at the weekend.

He said that often the ABG President Chief DR. JOHN MOMIS calls on Bougainvilleans to think Bougainville and not themselves whilst looking at development on Bougainville.

AND the actions by the Minister for DPI has shown that he is a real and patriotic Bougainville.

MR. DARE said that the Minister has done Bougainville proud by showing good example to the people of Bougainville that instead of playing politics we can work together and develop our home.

New Dawn FM understands that the Bougainville Soccer Academy will pave the way for activities in and around the Manetai area which is one of the flat lands on Bougainville.

And reports of the Manetai Limestone company coming online and the nearby Kuruwina International Airport makes MANETAI becoming one very important satellite town on Bougainville.




Source: Radio New Dawn on Bougainville


By Aloysius Laukai


The ABG President, Chief DR. JOHN MOMIS this week praised all Bougainvilleans who took part in the activities to welcome the Prime Minister of Papua New Guinea, PETER O’NEILL on Bougainville last week.

He made these remarks yesterday on New Dawn FM and said that despite our differences our people were mature enough to await the Prime Minister which is a true Bougainville custom.

President Momis said this shows that we can iron out our differences and work for the common good for all Bougainvilleans.

He said that Bougainville must now use this Good will visit by the Prime Minister to carry on with what they must do for Bougainville.

President MOMIS said we must at all cost rid of corruption from Bougainville and work honestly and transparently for the future of Bougainville.

He said that Bougainville has a bright and prosperous future if all can work together and create a harmonious place for all to live in and enjoy.




Source: Post-Courier

ABG threatens COE leadership


SIDELINED North Nasioi Council of Elders (COE) chairman Robson Aumora still maintains that he is the legitimate chairman even though he’s been suspended by the Council executive. Mr Aumora took a swipe at the North Nasioi Member in the Bougainville House of Representative Nicholas Darku saying he was not happy at how his case was handled. He added that Minister Darku who clearly knows the procedure and protocol on whatever to do with ABG and COE constitutions still went ahead and sacked him as the chairman of North Nasioi COE. “He (Minister Darku) was supposed to follow proper channels on the whole issue,” Mr Aumora said adding that this type of action is a threat to the COE constitution and Act. Mr Aumora was unceremoniously dumped from office after it was alleged that he misappropriate K60, 000 of the COE recurrent budget. “The action of the so-called Council executives spearheaded by Minister Darku is a direct threat to the constitution and the COE Act 1996, Part 13 (Section 69-71). I hope and trust Darku read through the COE Act. This is a complete threat to the people of North Nasioi and their COE.” Mr Aumora said he hasn’t received any suspension letter or notice till today and he hasn’t been clarified of which allegation either. “As I’ve said, I haven’t been notified of the suspension and I was allegedly accused since taking the office, since day one. I’ve yet to be served my suspension letter.” Mr Aumora said he can’t deny the allegation but want those accusing him of appropriation to justify their allegations. “They have to justify their allegations against me.” He also outlined that the Minister’s call for good governance and accountability in the media must be practicable in all areas meaning Minister Darku must also table how he spent all his constituency grants since taking office as the North Nasioi Member of parliament in the Bougainville House of Representatives. Mr Aumora maintained he has used the K60, 000 from the COE recurrent budget to serve the people’s needs and did not misappropriated adding that the acquittals are ready and will be presented to District Local Level Government Officer and the Local Level Government Division in Buka. “Iam responsible and liable for the recurrent budget which the K60, 000 comes from which means by law Iam entitled and can use the grant under my own discretion.” Mr Aumora supported the call for law enforcement agencies to investigate the misappropriation allegations against him adding that a thorough investigation into the management of the North Nasioi COE grants since its establishment in 1995 must also be conducted. 


Source: Papua New Guinea Mine Watch

O’Neill farewelled not welcomed at Panguna

by ramunickel


Arnold Jameson


So much was said in the media about the Prime Minister, Peter O'Neill's 'Good Will' visit to the No-Go-Zone area at Panguna, with a bunch of media personnel as his eyewitnesses to report back to the world, so that's pretty much what the world heard and read.

What the media doesn't know, and so won't tell you is that Mr O'Neil was not welcomed but rather fare-welled upon arrival at Central Bougainville's Panguna mine site area.

This, as everyone else and the 'big men and women chiefs' on the ground said is because Mr O'Neill probably couldn't understand or read the sign that said 'No-Go Zone' which after three meetings the night before, nagged his way into Panguna. He was given permission to pass through the checkpoint at 1am on that day.

Now pay attention. A normal Central Bougainville welcome is as follows;

For any ordinary new comer, the people will dance and splash water onto that person(s), then rub their faces with the famous local Kieta delicacy 'tamatama'.

In the case of 'big men/women, chiefs or leaders' with higher statuses in society, they get to be seated on pigs, and if they cannot, they walk in front of a pig to symbolize the person is being carried on the pig. Water is also splashed on them and the tamatama rubbed onto their faces.

However, sadly enough, Mr O'Neil got none of the two welcoming ceremonies mentioned above. He was said to be welcomed with a 'Torotoro' song/chant, meaning, a made up song, just to tell Mr O'Neil about their frustrations, sung in a frustrating tone.

The people rolled a mat for him to walk on, a mat that symbolizes the rolling up of a dead person before they are put into the ground. Moreover, instead of water being splashed onto Mr O'Neil, he was oiled, as is done to bodies of dead people in preparation for burial.

There was not a pig leading his way, except for the ones that were given with the food (as photographed and shown in the Newspapers), symbolizing the feast to end the moaning of a deceased person after burial.

Even more amusing, the principle landowners of the Panguna mine site did not actively participate, nor were they involved in the ceremonies. The people who were actively involved were from the hinterlands of Panguna, particularly the Panka villagers.

The message may be very clear but Mr O'Neil and his team had not a clue, as the people of Bougainville stood and watched him go through the rest of the ceremony 'smiling'.




Source: Radio New Dawn on Bougainville


By Alex Munme


CHINESE people living in Buka celebrated Chinese day last Saturday in Buka town.

The celebration was attended by friends and relatives of the few Chinese in Buka who joined hands and made it an enjoyable day for all.

Former ABG Member for Hagogohe Constituency, Robert Hamal Sawa also attended and spoke.

Mr. Sawa said Chinese day was celebrated throughout the World and Bougainville contributed in a little way.

He also spoke highly of China mentioning its economic boom and Bougainville economic development through Chinese and other International partnership.

Mr. Sawa congratulated the Chinese for the country’s achievements and wished all happy celebrations.




Source: Radio New Dawn on Bougainville


By Alex Munme


ALL Elementary and Primary School Fees will be totally subsidized by the Government in 2014 academic year throughout the Autonomous Region of Bougainville.

No student at the Elementary and Primary School level will pay any school fees according to Acting Chief Executive Officer of the Division of Education in Bougainville, Michael Meten.

Mr. Meten said Secondary School Students will pay a subsidized fee of K100 for grades 9 and 10 day students while boarding grade 9 and 10 students pay K200.

He said Grade 11 and 12 students will pay K200 for day and K300 for boarding students in all secondary schools in the region.

Meanwhile there will be no project fees paid at the start of the school year because no school has submitted any proposal to the Bougainville Education Board for approval, Mr. Meten said.

Mr. Meten said no submission for projects have reached the BEB for endorsement and therefore no student will pay any project fees yet for this year.

He added that schools have resumed on the 27th January, 2014 which was two week ago.

He said due to the implementation of free education policy he is anticipating an increase in the number of student enrolment for this year.




Source: Radio New Dawn on Bougainville


By Aloysius Laukai


A Buka Businessman, HENRY ONSA today questioned why the ABG carry forward unused funds whilst it cannot pay service providers for their services.

He told New Dawn FM that all his services to the ABG Parliament for all Air Condition installment and services were not paid last year although he was promised to be paid at the end of the year.

MR. ONSA said on the day account closed he was waiting outside when they ran the last cheque was completed and he missed out again.

He said the ABG must make sure these services are settled as it was the government which killing local Businesses.

MR. ONSA says that he is owed ONE HUNDRED TWENTY SOUND KINA in outstanding bills.

He said that if the ABG has more carry-overs, this means someone is not carrying out his or her duties.




Source: Bougainville24

A profile of Buka Island



The main population centre, on the south western side of the island, is Buka Town. It is based on the traditional village of Ieta.

Ieta was established near Buka Passage, the narrow, deep and fast flowing 200m wide tidal channel that separates Buka island from Bougainville.

In recent years, there has been considerable expansion of this settlement, and also in nearby Kubu and Hutjena, the locations of the Autonomous Bougainville Government and a national high school.

Buka is relatively flat some 52 kilometers long north-south and up to 18 kilometres wide.

The east coast is the windward side for most of the year, and is characterised by a coastal cliff that rises close to the ocean, leaving only a narrow and mostly rocky beach.

A coral reef rings the entire island, narrow on the east coast, which is battered by oceanic winds and large waves, and spreading into lagoons on the west coast.

Along the west coast run some small mountains, the Richard Parkinson Range, named after the Danish planter and explorer who, in the 19th century, lived for many years near Rabaul.

The highest peak in this range is Mt Bei (458m). The range begins at the back of Buka Town and peters out near Carola Harbour. The few large rivers in the island run along the interior of this range, the largest one being the Gagan River.

The rest of the island is a large raised limestone formation which rises from 10 meters inland to 70-100 meters along the eastern coast cliff. This cliff corresponds to the reef of an ancient lagoon.

The limestone morphology means there is very little surface water available throughout most of the island.

This poses a problem for villagers, especially during the dry season, when they must collect the water from kukubu springs along the foot of the cliff.

Buka іs famous іn the anthropological literature аs the site оf а large аnd militant social movement, the Hahalis Welfare Society, now disappeared, аs well аs several оther political аnd religious movements.

The island is divided into five Autonomous Bougainville Government electorates: Haku, Peit (covering the West Coast and Solos), Halia (from Tohatsi to Hahalis), Hagogohe (from Salasa to Sing) and Tsitalato (from Lonahan to Buka Passage).

Each of these electorates has its own local government, known as Councils of Elders.




Source: Papua New Guinea Mine Watch

USAID warns Panguna reopening, corporate impunity and AusAID legislation greatest threats to stability on Bougainville

by ramunickel 


 The Panguna mine cannot fund Bougainville’s independence, and is the most credible source of instability in Bougainville, so says a recent United States government agency report titled Bougainville Stability Desk Study [1mb].

According to USAID, many on the ground in Bougainville are adamantly opposed to Rio Tinto’s return, feel overlooked by ABG ‘consultation’ process, and have a thirst for justice.

USAID also warns that the recent mining legislation drafted for the ABG by AusAID consultant, Anthony Regan, ‘could reignite conflict’. They also worry anger over corporate and state abuses have been allowed to fester, which could explode if Rio Tinto return.

Given these damning conclusions by the aid agency of a world  superpower, you would think perhaps one or two news services would have reported on the findings, published on 27 January? But no!

In glaring contrast, when the Australian Strategic Policy Institute called for the Panguna mine’s reopening and Australian Defence Force boots on the ground, they were given prime time on Australia's ABC radio and television. Even a minor blog post by a former ADF officer calling for the mine’s reopening was given a whirl on the ABC.

It would seem if anyone sneezes ‘Rio reopen the mine’, the ABC reports it along with other regional news agencies.

There is, however, apparently no room for modest dissenting opinions - even one from state agencies belonging to a conservative world power.  In the Aussie dominated South Pacific even they are too radical!

Here are some key highlights from the report:

‘Though the Bougainville peace process is widely heralded as a peacebuilding success, the post-conflict order remains fragile’.

‘The political, social, economic, and environmental fallout from the opening of the Panguna mine in 1972 by  Bougainville Copper Ltd. (BCL), a subsidiary of the Australian Rio Tinto mining company, was the primary catalyst for conflict’.

‘Simply stated, negotiating the “most conflict-prone  problem in Bougainville today” is a high-risk endeavour, particularly because reaching “consensus on the  future of the Panguna mine is crucial for the future of peace in Bougainville.”’

‘Starting in 2009, the ABG held extensive  consultations within Panguna and the areas in its immediate surrounding … Despite these developments, the more  recent public fora appear less inclusive and comprehensive’.

‘Though restrictions to the mine area have eased, these hardline [Meekamui] factions still control the access road to the mine, as well as the site itself [Note: Hardline = opposed to foreign corporate ownership of Bougainville].  They also enjoy considerable support, including from communities downstream from the mine who were subject to the environmental damage’.

‘These ongoing [ABG] public fora have also been criticized for not representing other key constituents. To date, only a few fora have been held, turnout has been low, and questions remain about the outreach to, and thus participation of, key landowners’.

‘A number of leading women activists have disparaged the [ABG consultation] process for not including women’s voices more  visibly and prominently; this is particularly significant in a society that is traditionally matrilineal.  The  perception that plans to re-open the mine are moving forward without a meaningful voice for Bougainvillean  stakeholders—reminiscent of the 1970s and ‘80s—is a cause for significant concern’.

‘The re-opening of the mine may cause instability in other ways. BCL appears unwilling to provide financial compensation to victims of the conflict. This is likely to be a sticking point, given that according to the Umbrella Panguna Landowners Association, compensation “will come as a pre-condition to any negotiation  talks.”’

‘The Meekamui, for example, still demand that Rio Tinto pay 10 billion Kina (approximately 4.2 billion U.S. dollars) in compensation. Some even demand that Rio Tinto be prohibited from mining in Bougainville’.

‘The new mining law that was developed by the ABG ostensibly looks promising in that “approval of mining and resolution of disputes will be negotiated in an all-inclusive landowner forum  process.”  A potential pitfall, however, appears to be the provision in the law placing the ABG in control of  mining once operations have begun, including decisions on revenue sharing.  This has the potential to marginalize landowners, and, reminiscent of the 1970s and 80s, could reignite conflict over equitable revenue sharing’.

‘Strong support has emerged in Bougainville in favor of opening the mine prior to independence: this is based on the belief that independence is only possible if Bougainville is economically viable, which can only be accomplished by reopening the mine. If the timetable of the referendum is held, however, it seems increasingly unlikely that the mine will be open before that time; even more certain is that it will be years (well after the referendum) before the mine is generating revenue for the government’.

‘The fear today is that once again external factors—i.e. the referendum and the re-opening  of the mine—could unleash local conflicts. This may be particularly destabilizing given the number of unreconciled conflicts that still exist as a legacy of the war’.




Source: Radio New Zealand International - Dateline Pacific 

Panguna mine critical to Bougainville's progress


Bougainville's leader says the re-opening of the Panguna mine is vital to the province's progress.









The president of the Papua New Guinea province of Bougainville says the re-opening of the Panguna mine is vital for the autonomous province's economic and social advancement.


There was widespread debate about the matter last year and with the government holding consultations around the province.


But the last of these, probably the most crucial, with the community around the Panguna mine, is yet to go ahead while the government's new mining law is also being held up.


President John Momis told Don Wiseman the province cannot go ahead without the mine opening but some people are not co-operating.


JOHN MOMIS: The landowners have not fully co-operated and in order for us to open the Panguna mine we also have to have our own mining act. We have struck some problems because certain quarters are not co-operating. They have got some problems, so we have put that on the backburner right now.


DON WISEMAN: Some of those groups that you are having problems with, they are saying they would prefer there not to be any mining at all, that the province can do better concentrating on other things like agriculture and fishing and tourism, this sort of thing. There is a lot of merit isn't there, in what they are saying?


JOHN MOMIS: Yes and no. It is my view that without the mine it will be well nigh impossible to generate enough revenue to run the autonomous government. It is just not possible. Even with all the help from the national government, you can't run the autonomous government with the budgetary allocation we get, the current budgetary allocation. so we are not attracting a lot of investment in agriculture and fisheries, whereas the mine will generate a lot of revenue. And it will be under our own mining law and our own policy.


DON WISEMAN: But if you put in place the infrastructure you are talking about and the various other services, at that point presumably the province would become a far more attractive investment opportunity.


JOHN MOMIS: If we have the money. We are having difficulty getting the funds.


DW: What sort of assistance are you receiving from international aid donors? I know you are getting a little bit of help from the likes of Australia and New Zealand but are you getting help elsewhere?


JOHN MOMIS: The biggest help is from Japan - 15 bridges built - by the way one of them was washed out the other night - apart from that we don't have much. We have a bit of Chinese investment but it is very small. We still have rule of law problems, you know law and order. We have a police force that is not strong enough, lacks capacity.


DON WISEMAN: We talked about this last year but you were looking for assistance from New Zealand and Australia in terms of creating a different type of police force, changing the training and that sort of thing. Is that underway?


JOHN MOMIS: Things are moving at a snail's pace. We have a real problem with our police. Much as we are getting help from New Zealand, it is just not happening quickly. We need big funds. That is why I am saying unless we have the mine open we will be moving at a snail's pace and ABG's being accused of not doing anything but ABG doesn't have the funds and that is our biggest problem.




Source: Post-Courier

Government plans to open Aropa Airport


THE national Government intends to reopen Bougainville’s defunct Aropa Airport in three months’ time.

And Prime Minister Peter O’Neill has given an undertaking that he will fly to Bougainville again after three months to open the airport once all maintenance and buildings, including the necessities, are completed.

Aropa Airport was once PNG’s international gateway to Bougainville from Solomon Islands, Fiji and Australia during the Bougainville copper mine days. The airport was closed soon after all services came to a halt in 1989, during the Bougainville Crisis, and was decommissioned by the then Civil Aviation Authority (now National Airports Corporation) immediately after the closure.

Mr O’Neill has instructed State Owned Enterprises Minister Ben Micah to take the lead, and in conjunction with the national and Autonomous Bougainville Government leaders, to have all government agencies, specifically the National Airports Corporation and others, involved in the re-opening of the once international gateway for Bougainville.

The Government will most probably do the re-opening after April, however there is no set month except the time frame of three months to work on the airport has been set.

Mr O’Neill announced this at the Port Moresby Nature Park during the weekend to officially thank the New Ireland the media industry and all stakeholders for a very successful Bougainville trip.

"I want to re-open Aropa Airport in three months time," he said.

"I want to see NAC move in to start working on the airport. I want to see buildings go up, the runway is already there and I want to see the project complete because I will return to Bougainville after three months to officially open Aropa Airport after 22 years of it being closed," Mr O’Neill said.

The prime minister and Mr Micah could not detail how much would be spent on the maintenance and re-opening and construction of the aerodrome but it is believed the national Government recently released K5 million to the ABG leaders to maintain the airport.

Mr Micah is expected to travel to Bougainville in two weeks’ time to officially announce the establishment of Post PNG, in Arawa, and to see the possibilities of re-opening establishments of state owned enterprises in Central Bougainville.

Source: The National

Go back, PM tells SMEs

PRIME Minister Peter O’Neill has advised state-owned enterprises to restore their services to the Autonomous Region of Bougainville.
It follows his three-day goodwill visit to the region last week.
Minister for Public Enterprises and State Investment Ben Micah and heads of the state-owned enterprises have indicated their saupport for Government’s intention to restore government services on Bougainville.  
O’Neill described the visit as significant and important as it involved reconciliation and talks with the Autonomous Bougainville Government and the tribal Me’ekamui Government.
“The issue with Bougainville is that we’ve got many challenges,” he said.
“It’s easy to go and hold talks but more important is to maintain peace in the region.”
He said after the visit, the three governments were ready to work together.
He said previous governments and international development partners and donors found it difficult to work with the ABG and Me’ekamui government because of different factions.
“We are trying to bring services to Bougainville and I am calling on all SOEs to restore services,” O’Neill said.
“In three months’ time the Aropa airport will be re-opened and
contracts are ready for the sealing of the road from Kokapau to Arawa.”
O’Neill was at the Nature Park, in Port Moresby, on Sunday to thank the delegation that travelled with him to Bougainville.
Micah agreed that Bougainville now has a different attitude towards the Government following O’Neill’s visit to the region.
“It’s a story about a new chapter of history in PNG and Bougainville – achieving peace, unity and restoration,” Micah said.



Source: Journeyman Pictures

Bougainville on the Brink



Transcript of the Journeyman report:


Bougainville is on the brink of reopening the controversial mining operation that sparked its civil war. With a heavily armed population and a generation of unemployed youth, conditions are ripe for violence.


Fifteen years after the end of the war, Bougainville has barely recovered.“There are hundreds and hundreds with no formal employment”, says development worker, Agnes Titus. Yet the government is pushing a radical solution to reopen the mining operation that is alleged by some to have funded and orchestrated the conflict. “Nobody’s talking about the human rights violations”, says Philip Miriori, one of many locals demanding compensation from mining giant Rio Tinto. Despite strong opposition, many islanders are


Video Transcript


Sound-up: ocean waves


Narrator: The island of Bougainville is running out of time. Fifteen years after war ended, the place has barely recovered. So today, the island’s government is pushing for a radical solution. It’s a controversial move, that could start the war all over again… The people are worried, but also desperate for change…Like these two teens we meet on a Tuesday morning, drunk on jungle-juice, the island’s potent moonshine.




Maggie Zelaya (off-camera) THAT’S NOT GOOD.












Sound-up: music from liquor store


Narrator: It didn’t used to be like this. In the 1970s and ‘80s Bougainville was the most advanced province in Papua New Guinea, thanks to a massive copper-mine called Panguna.


Archive on-screen credit: BCL ORIENTATION VIDEO)




Sound up: explosion


Narrator: The mine was owned by a company called BCL, a subsidiary of global mining giant Rio Tinto.


Archive on-screen credit: AN EVERGREEN ISLAND)


Narrator: But from the start there was opposition to the mine – because of the steep environmental cost, and because many felt they weren’t benefitting. In 1989, after their calls for change were ignored, angry locals rose up and shut down the mine. Papua New Guinea sent in the troops and civil war broke out … By the time it ended in 1998 some 15 thousand Bougainvilleans had died – a tenth of the population.


(over slow pan of mine today)


Today the mine sits untouched. Rio Tinto has not been allowed back; many here blame the company for causing the war. There are even allegations Rio ordered and funded the conflict…But now, the island’s government is convinced that reopening this mine is the only way to move forward.




Narrator: So the government now wants to do the once unthinkable: welcome back – Rio Tinto’s BCL.




Sound-up: pumping gas


Narrator: But on the ground things aren’t so cut and dry. There’s strong opposition to the government’s plan and anger is brewing…


Lawrence Matao agrees to take us to meet some of the people opposed to the mine. Lawrence is a former rebel. He started off as an employee at the mine, but then fought against it.




Narrator: Laurence takes us to a remote village near Panguna, where the people have been fighting to keep Rio Tinto out for half a century.


Sound-up: blade cutting through grass


Narrator: They built this monument in the 1960s to mark the time they chased away an early Rio Tinto exploration team using bows and arrows. Today they still want nothing to do with Rio or it’s subsidiary BCL.




Sound-up: village elder speaks in pidgin






Narrator: The village lost many men in the conflict.




Narrator: And the suffering of war is still fresh in their minds.




Narrator: We’re about to leave when the people tell us BCL’s return could cause another war.


Sound-up chief speaks in pidgin: “second heavy might come up.”






Narrator: Vice-president Nisira says there is nothing to worry about.




Sound-up government official: “Whether or not Panguna should reopen.”


Narrator: The government has been informing the people about its mining plan through a series of public consultations. One of the government’s key selling points for its plan is the promise of independence from Papua New Guinea, a long-standing dream of the people.


Sound up government official: “There is no autonomy without economy.”


Narrator: Bougainvilleans go to the polls to vote on independence from Papua New Guinea sometime between 2015 and 2020 – but only if the island can first develop an economy to support itself. The government thinks mining is the only way to do that in time.


Sound-up: applause


Narrator: Many here are already convinced.




Narrator: But, there are some issues that consultations alone can’t fix.






Narrator: Philip Miriori is one of many demanding compensation from Rio Tinto. He’s even sued the company in the U.S. as part of a class-action lawsuit.




Sound-up: Steve Berman talking quietly


Narrator: On the other side of the world, Seattle lawyer Steve Berman filed the class action lawsuit against Rio in 2000 accusing the company of war crimes, genocide, and crimes against humanity. Berman is convinced the company orchestrated and funded the war.




(Archive on-screen credit: AUSTRALIAN BROADCASTING CORP.)


Narrator: Berman’s evidence also includes an affidavit from the former prime minister of Papua New Guinea who said: “Because of Rio Tinto’s financial influence in PNG, the company controlled the government.”


(Graphic 1: on-screen text)


Sound-up Berman: “He said…”


Narrator: Berman also got an affidavit from a former general who said: “The Papua New Guinea military functioned as the corporation’s personal security force…”


(Graphic 2: on-screen text)


(Graphic 3: on-screen text)


Narrator (continued): ”…and were ordered by BCL to take action to reopen the mine by any means necessary.”




Sound up: “The genocide and the war crimes.”


Narrator: But Berman’s team never got to face Rio Tinto in court. This past June the case was dismissed after the US Supreme Court restricted the law that Berman had sued under, called the Alien Tort Statute. For decades it had allowed foreigners to sue violators of international law in the US… but not anymore.


Sound up: “In their own territory.”




Narrator: Rio Tinto’s BCL did not respond to our multiple requests for comment, but the company has always maintained its innocence.


Sound-up: driving in car


Narrator: Back on the island, tension over the mine is steadily climbing. Lawrence Matau agrees to take us to see the now infamous pit. We can’t go alone because access is still controlled by rebels – there to prevent Rio Tinto from coming back.




Maggie (off-camera): WHERE DID YOU WORK?








Narrator: Lawrence is interrupted by the arrival of a school field trip. The kids have come to get their first look at the mine that has shaped their lives. Lawrence steps in to give them a better understanding.


Sound-up Lawrence: “Copper, copper colour, copper colour.”


It is this generation that will be most affected by the decisions facing Bougainville today. A point not lost on Lawrence.






Narrator: Agnes Titus used to work at Panguna. Today she is a development worker. She believes the mine will help more than it will hurt.




Sound-up: drumming on guitar




Sound-up: guitar strumming


Narrator:  For most Bougainvilleans, like Allan Gioni, the island’s unresolved past makes the decision on mining a painful one. Allan is an artist and father of five who spent his childhood dodging bullets from the PNG army.




Sound-up: rain


Narrator: Despite the history Allan is open to mining – as long as things are done differently. For him that means everyone should benefit. So that families like his might get electricity, plumbing, and a real roof on their homes. He worries about the consequences if things aren’t done right.




Sound-up: dancers singing


Narrator: The people of Bougainville are facing an uncertain future. In November 2013 an Australian think tank warned that conditions here are ripe for violence – the population is still heavily armed, and a generation of unemployed youth are getting restless. With as little as a year to go until the independence referendum, the question of how Bougainville will recover in time, remains unanswered.


Sound up: singers fade out


(Flash to white)


(Fade to black)also desperate for the economic boost the mine could bring to Bougainville’s bid for independence. With as little as a year to go until the independence referendum, the island is fast running out of time.





Source: Papua New Guinea MIne Watch


Bougainville Forum – “A forum for any issue affecting the Autonomous Region of Bougainville” … except Mining

by ramunickel 


The popular Facebook page, Bougainville Forum, is said by its administrators to be “a forum for any issue affecting the Autonomous Region of Bougainville”. The phrase “easier said than done” springs to mind – for the Bougainville Forum page serves certain elite interest, which are becoming increasingly evident.

This is reflected in a growing number of forum members who have been removed without being informed by administrators of the justification. The people removed have generally been those who were vocally against:

1. Rio Tinto, BCL & corporate companies

2. Panguna Mine Reopening

It must be noted that the biggest, if not the most significant aspect of the forum is the Panguna mine itself, which remains as a highly contentious and openly discussed topic. It should be laid out plainly that there are avid supporters of the mine and opposers. However, lately there has been a campaign of sabotage waged by certain individuals who claim themselves to be Bougainvillean, and their aim is to remove anyone who speaks out against BCL, and the Panguna mine reopening. It would appear there is no form of democracy in mine related discussions on the forum, which leads to pro-BCL misinformation and propaganda.

Interestingly the administrators to Bougainville Forum are very careful in approving the posts on the forum. Anything that is posted against the corporates will never be approved. It would be interesting to know the people behind the Facebook page Bougainville Forum, their background and institutional affiliations.

Bougainvilleans who have been raising concern over the re-opening of the mine should be given the freedom to air their views. Everything that goes up on the forum in favour of capitalists thinking is welcomed as well. Democracy is about the battle of ideas not their suppression.




Source: Radio New Zealand International

Bougainville and Port Moresby sort funding differences


The president of Papua New Guinea's Bougainville says funding disputes with the national government were resolved during last week's historic prime ministerial visit.

John Momis says Peter O'Neill's visit marked a new beginning for the autonomous province.

He says a key outcome is the recognition that a collaborative approach is needed as the province prepares for its eventual referendum on independence.

Mr Momis says the Autonomous Bougainville Government has calculated there are arrears of 70 million US dollars in the development and restoration fund attached to the Peace Agreement.

He says Mr O'Neill accepts this and has promised to remit the money and other promised funding - though with conditions.


"The other five hundred million which the national government committed to Bougainville over the next five years, only 100 million has been released,, and the PM made a commitment also that the 200 million (kina) which is in a trust account will have to be released, pending approval of projects, impact projects." 


The president of Bougainville John Momis




Source: Papua New Guinea Mine Watch

Mr Daveona and Pariu – Where has the Panguna Landowners’ Trust Money Gone?


Missing annual returns, over K400,000 in assets unaccounted for and a general lack of financial accountability raise serious questions about the management of landowner funds…


Francis Ona and Perpetua Serero, like many in the mine community, thought something was amiss with the Panguna Landowners Association in 1987. PLA’s self-appointed leadership had lost touch with the everyday struggle of villagers, and were climbing the corporate ladder using their position at the PLA as leverage.


Young, dynamic and articulate, Serero and Ona challenged the PLA executive to an election, on an anti-mining and community development platform. They won in a landslide.


During 1988 the new PLA leaders turned their eyes to deep problems within the Road Mining Tailings Leases Trust Fund, an organisation that had been set up to administer a range of mine compensation payments.


With the Trust administered by the ousted PLA executive there were widespread concerns that its funds were being used for the benefit of the Trust’s Directors who were said to be receiving relatively ‘lavish Director’s fees’, in a report issued by Applied Geology Associates. Serero and Ona, as PLA Chairperson and Secretary respectively, attempted to assume control of the Trust and implement a thorough audit of its accounts. This was resisted by the Trust’s Directors, who successfully blocked Ona and Serero in the courts.


As a result, to this day the Trust fund, and its substantial asset base, is administered by its Directors Michael Pariu (who is the Trust’s Chairman), Lawrence Daveona (who is also  the Trust Secretary), Severinus Ampaoi, and Peter Perakai (Pariu, Daveona and Perakai were all part of the PLA executive ousted in 1987). The Trust shares are held by Lawrence Daveona, Michal Pariu, Wendelinus Bitanuma, Steven Tampura, and Michael Totobu [Entity_Extract-Road_Mining_Tailings_Leases_Trustee Ltd].


It is in this context that there are serious concerns over how the latter parties have been managing the Trust funds, which are meant to benefit the entire mine affected community.


In the Trust’s 2001 annual return [Annual Return 2001] its assets are valued at K1,511,163, with no liabilities outstanding. Were this sizable sum invested in even a low yielding security, we would expect to see a modest increase over the last decade. Yet in their 2010 Annual Return – worryingly, none have been submitted for 2011-13 – the Trust’s finances have dropped half a million kina to K1,095,901 [Annual Return 2010].


So where exactly did the K415,262 go?


Unfortunately we do not know the financial position of the Trust prior to 2001. But according to its own Director, Secretary and Shareholder, Lawrence Daveona, it had become by 1990 a ‘multimillion kina company’ with stakes in the Investment Corporation of PNG, Anglo Holdings Limited, Niugini-Lloyds Bank, the Bougainville Development Corporation, numerous plantations and various investment properties. Some of these assets may have been damaged during the conflict, but like BCL whose insurer compensated the company for losses in assets, the Trust presumably insured these investments and was compensated.


However, a lack of published records means we have no way of telling how these numerous investments were handled by the Trust during the 1990s, when most Bougainvilleans were busy dodging bullets and bombs, or whether losses in funds have been accounted for. Complicating matters, the trust’s financial administration has not been subjected to the scrutiny of an external auditor for over a decade (only companies with K5 million + assets must be audited under the Companies Act 1997).


Unfortunately, this is not the first time Lawrence Daveona and Michael Pariu have appeared on this blog. In 2013 we published leaked documents showing that Daveona had received thousands in cash payments between 2009-2011 from BCL’s shareholder’s association. This revelation came following Daveona reported sacking as Acting Deputy Clerk of PNG’s Parliament. According to the Post Courier he illicitly supplied, ‘alcohol, vehicles and other resources … [to] Fraud Squad officers to carry out investigations against certain senior officers of the Parliamentary services’.


We also published photos of Michael Pariu, Lawrence Daveona and Severinus Ampaoi, socialising with the controversial BCL shareholder, Axel Sturm, in an exclusive Port Moresby hotel – Sturm recently claimed Bougainvilleans live in the ‘stone age’, and has promised to turn Bougainville into the new ‘United Arab Emirates’.


Axel G Sturm with Lawrence Daveona, Michael Pariu, Chris Damana and Severinus Ampaoi


We also know from historical accounts that BCL fought tooth and nail, to have Daveona and Pariu restored as leaders of the PLA during 1988 – indeed internal BCL records  suggest the company even told the government to have the new leadership arrested, so the old unelected executive could be returned.


We wonder why?


Ona and Serero warned when ‘Chiefs’ work for money rather than the people, foreign corporations can make them dance to whatever tune they choose.


Fast forward to 2014, and the Prime Minister’s historic visit to Bougainville. We now have Lawrence Daveona, accompanied by Michael Pariu, telling the Post-Courier that ‘the Landowners of Panguna mine and the surrounding leases were united for the re-opening of the mine’.


Following their resounding defeat at the hands of Ona and Serero in 1987, both Pariu and Daveona have repositioned themselves as leaders of the pro-mining landowner faction.


But before these two men start eyeing the new prize, it is time for them to publicly explain what has happened to the landowning community’s ‘multimillion’ investment administered through the Trust since 1989.



Source: Radio New Dawn on Bougainville


By Aloysius Laukai


The ABG President, Chief DR. JOHN MOMIS is calling on the people of Bougainville no matter what faction they come from to be committed for Bougainville’s development into the future.

He was speaking on New Dawn FM this morning.

The President said that the recent trip by the Papua New Guinea Prime Minister, PETER O’NEILL to Bougainville showed his commitment for Bougainville and the ball was in Bougainville’s court to make this commitments work.

He said that it was now time for Bougainville to unite and support the momentum created by this trip to develop the region.

President MOMIS said that the Papua New Guinea, Prime Minister has clearly stated that Panguna was in the hands of the landowners and the Autonomous Bougainville Government and they can decide on it at a later date.

He said that his main aim was to build the infrastructures needed urgently like road, bridges, airports, Hospitals and Schools to prepare the place for the approaching referendum.

PRESIDENT MOMIS said that trip by the Prime Minister was a wakeup call for Bougainvilleans to come out from their slumber and contribute to peace building and development programs for Bougainville.

He said that Bougainville was in the hands of all Bougainvilleans and making Autonomy work or achieving an acceptable result in the coming referendum will depend on how we are united and preparing for this referendum.

President MOMIS further warned that if Bougainville fails this time this would be the end of Bougainville as nobody would want to trust us in future.



Pictures taken during the Church Service at Gogohe Parish


Pictured at the front is Justice John Kawi, Snr Magistrate Bruce Tasikul and ACP Paul Kamuai

Picture by Alex Munme

Lawyers marching at the Legal Year opening today.

Picture by Alex Munme



Source: Radio New Dawn on Bougainville


By Aloysius Laukai


The Legal fraternity especially Police Investigators have been challenged to investigate and put law breakers to face the full force of the law instead of running loose on the streets as if they did nothing.

This was the challenged made by the Bougainville Senior Magistrate, BRUCE TASIKUL at the legal year opening in Gogohe today.

Magistrate TASIKUL said that outstanding cases of killings have not been investigated fully resulting in criminals not been arrested for their acts.

He said that there are many cases of deaths reported as accidents which if investigated fully the story would be different and this has left families devastated because they have not seen any justice done by the Law and Justice sector.

Magistrate TASIKUL also called on LAWYERS, Magistrates and Police personnel to work together to make sure the people see Justice being done on Bougainville.


Pictured is local ABG Member PETER SOHIA addressing and welcoming the legal fraternity today.

Pictures by Alex Munme




Source: Radio New Dawn on Bougainville


By Alex Munme


BOUGAINVILLE Legal Fraternity officially opened its doors to provide quality information and services in Bougainville today at the Hagogohe Catholic Mission on Buka Island, Autonomous Region of Bougainville.

Unlike previous years, the legal year opening was moved to a rural community mainly for awareness purposes.

The program began with a procession led by Bougainville Police Service, Correctional Service, Staff of all Court Systems in Bougainville including the ABG Lawyers, Private Lawyers, Public Solicitors State Lawyers, District and National Court Staff, Support Staff and Village Court Officials.

Hagogohe Primary School Students also took part in the procession to the Church ground for the Guard of Honor, the church service and finally speeches.

The Legal year opening was attended by Bougainville Chief Administrator, Chris Siriosi who was the CEO for Law & Justice before taking the post of Chief Administrator, Justic John Kawi, ACP, Paul Kamuai, Buka Court House Senior Presiding Magistrate, Bruce Tasikul, Representative’s from Public Solicitors Office, Edward Latu from Latu Lawyers, ABG Member for Hagogohe Constituency, Peter Sohia and others.

Speaking at the official opening program, Bougainville Chief Administrator, Chris Siriosi said part of program was to inform and educate the rural communities on Law and Justice or the Judiciary System.

Mr. Siriosi said the Constitution gave the Judiciary System the right to perform and look after good governance, rule of law including customary law.

He said making decisions was not based on what someone thought but based on the rule of law and the constitution.

He also encouraged the customary legal system to work in all communities.

The Chief Administrator also said 2015 legal year opening will be held in Arawa, Central Bougainville.





Source: Radio New Dawn on Bougainville


By Aloysius Laukai


A woman leader in the Bana district, South Bougainville is questioning why the Prime Minister, PETER O'NEILL did not make any commitment to help the people of BANA who have and are still feeling the pain from the closed Panguna Copper mine.

In a letter sent to New Dawn FM at the weekend, MS MILENG said that the BANA people continue to suffer silently from the huge deposits of wastes down the JABA river system.

She said that BANA could have been considered for development as they are still been affected by the wastes even though the mine has been closed for more than twenty years.

New Dawn FM understands commitments made by the Prime Minister for road infrastruture and other developments will also include BANA and including all other areas who missed out on the first official visit by the Prime Minister to Bougainville.


Pictured are Panguna women who welcomed the Prime Minister and his delegation to Panguna last week




Source: Radio New Dawn on Bougainville

ABG President Chief DR.JOHN MOMIS welcomed to Panguna during PM's visit to Panguna last week.





Source: Radio New Dawn on Bougainville


By Aloysius Laukai'


The proposed Bougainville Soccer Academy that will be funded by FIFA will become a reality soon and will change the Manetai area forever.

The proposed FIFA project was supposed to be built at HAHELA parish grounds but due to landowners issues this was moved to Manetai.

And since this changes were effected FIFA officials have been visiting this place to make sure everything including the land acquisition was in order.

The local ABG member for Eivo/Torau Melchior Dare and three other Ministers, Minister for lands, MICHAEL ONI and Minister for Primary Industry NICHOLAS DARKU were present yesterday for a official signing of a MOU with the landowners to allow the project to move forward.

The project will create economic activities around the area and will be the catalyst for development once the Manetai Limestone gets off the ground. Work on the project is also underway according to the local member and Minister for Community Development. MELCHIOR DARE.


Pictured are Ministers Nick Darku and Michael Oni talking with some landowners at yesterday's signing.




Source: Radio New Dawn on Bougainville


By Aloysius Laukai


The 2014 Legal year on Bougainville will be officially opened on Monday February 3rd,2014 with a special Mass to be held at the Gogohe Parish on Buka island.

New Dawn FM has received invitation for the Office of the Assistant Registrar of the National Courts of Justice in Buka today.

According to the memo, the mass will be held at the Gogohe Parish starting 9am with all legal fraternity lining up to the church service.

This will now pave the way for National Court Sittings for 2014 to commence in Buka, Arawa and Buka.

According to the memo, the National Court Circuit for Buin will be from the 4th to the 7th of February, Arawa from 10th to 14th February and Buka from 17th to the 21st of February.

New DAWN fm did cover the two previous years openings one at Hahela Parish and the last one was held at the Buka town United Church.




Source: Radio New Dawn on Bougainville


By Aloysius Laukai


ABG PRESIDENT, CHIEF DR. JOHN MOMIS will meet with the four National Members representing Bougainville next week to make sure that the momentum created by the visit of the Prime Minister is maintained.

Speaking at a News Conference, PRESIDENT MOMIS said that he wants the momentum created by the visit is  maintained and people see some practical developments on Bougainville.

He said that he was very confident the visit by PRIME MINISTER O’NEILL is a starting point for the unified effort by all Bougainvilleans to see positive changes throughout the region.




Source: Radio New Dawn on Bougainville


By Aloysius Laukai


The ABG President, Chief DR. JOHN MOMIS yesterday also welcomed the announcement by the Prime Minister for the PACIFIC MMI Insurance company for establishing in Bougainville.

Speaking to reporters at a Press conference, President MOMIS said that this is surely one way of making it conducive for Investors and local Businesses to grow their Businesses.

President MOMIS said that the announcement by the Prime Minister was good news for Bougainvilleans who have been rebuilding Bougainville without any insurance cover.

He said as the PACIFIC MMI was a Government State Enterprise and coming to the region will not be a problem.

President Momis said that sometimes Government owning such institutions are good as they focus not on the profit but delivery of services to the people.




Source: Radio New Dawn on Bougainville


By Aloysius Laukai


A Paramount Chief in Buin, JACOB TOOKE said that Bougainville was privileged to see their father again after so many years.

In his welcoming address to Prime Minister PETER O’NEILL and his delegation, MR. TOOKE said that the people of Bougainville were united to meet him and seek some assistance from him as he has forsaken them for a long time.

MR. TOOKE who also spoke at the reconciliation ceremony between the two leaders in Port Moresby earlier said that Bougainville remains an integral part of Papua New Guinea and as such need more support from the National Government.

The Paramount chief also thanked the Prime Minister for accepting their custom by allowing the people of Buin to carry him in a traditional platform that is for paramount chiefs only.

He said that he has been accorded a special place in the hearts of the people of Buin as one of their local chiefs.

Prime Minister, PETER O’NEILL also announced that this was the first time, for any group of people in Papua New Guinea that he has allowed himself to be carried.




Source: Radio New Dawn on Bougainville


By Aloysius Laukai


The recent floods at Ramazon, Tsunpets and Kekesu rivers were big mud pushed down to the sea as seen on this picture




The European Shareholders of Bougainville Copper (ESBC)