27 Nov 2009

Highway to PNG oil project blocked by disgruntled landowners

11:49 am on 27 November 2009

A main highway into the Kutubu oil projects in Papua New Guinea has been blocked at Poroma by disgruntled Peripi landowners over the LNG benefit sharing agreement in Southern Highlands Province.

The 15-kilometre stretch of highway between Wasu and Konopulu junction has been impassable because hundreds of trees were chopped down and laid across the road as well as huge boulders.

The Post Courier reports the situation has become a threat to the multi-billion-kina oil projects in Kutubu.

Police in the region could not do anything as manpower is stretched with the Kandep by-election and the BSA signing agreements.

Members of the Mt Hagen police mobile squad unit six tried to clear the road but ran into difficulty, and Southern Highlands police chief Jimmy Onopia said that the blockage was a reaction to the BSA signing by frustrated locals in the area.