18 Oct 2011

Re-settlement of people living near a large PNG gold mine has to be affordable - Governor

9:23 am on 18 October 2011

The Governor of Papua New Guinea's Enga Province says the full scale re-settlement of communities living near a large gold mine has to be affordable.

A landowners group in Enga province are demanding a comprehensive re-settlement of over 10,000 people living in the Porgera gold mine special mining lease area.

The group, the Porgera Alliance, says human rights violations have occurred during the mining operation, run by Canadian company Barrick Gold, and the company's practice of relocating some families within the lease area is unacceptable.

Governor Peter Ipatas says the Alliance will be able to contribute to an upcoming review of the mining operation by the country's mining department but financial aspects have to be considered.

"The relocation exercise is within the economic means of the company and the national government. I don't think we should be very unreasonable. Because at the end of the day the mine also benefits the community and the province."

Governor Peter Ipatas.

He says the review was expected this year but he thinks it will now take place next year.