23 Feb 2012

More assessment needed of dead fish in PNG's Morobe - Cabinet Minister

7:38 pm on 23 February 2012

A Papua New Guinea cabinet minister says more assessment needs to be done before the cause of dead fish in a key river system in Morobe Province can be ascertained.

The Department of Environment and Conservation sent a team to Morobe after Labu people complained about a build-up of dead marine life in the Markham river.

The Labu community blames discharge from the Hidden Valley Gold Mine but the team concluded the Mine did not cause the problem.

The National Planning Minister and local Bulolo MP, Sam Basil, says there are a lot of activities on this river system.

"We also have iron mines like the new Minco mine and thousands of other alluvial miners including recently there was a huge dam that was naturally built up during the floods since December which has been dynamited by the Defence Force, and the dam has since burst. And also we do have sedimentation coming down from Kumalu river. So at this stage I would not point fingers at any activities because I would be wrong."

Sam Basil