Premier of Renbel Province Hon. Collin Singamoana has refuted claims his provincial executive has vested economic interest in the bauxite mining in the province than standing up for its people against environmental destruction caused by the operation.
Resource owners of West Rennel had accused the Renbel Provincial government for ignoring outstanding issues relating to the actual mining.
But Premier Singamoana said, it was wrong to say that his government was interested in business fees collected from the investor.
He said business license fee was an obligation the investor had to comply with prior to the actual mining.
“Maybe because landowners might think we are only worried about revenues, no, because when it comes to revenues, it is the company’s responsibility,” he said.
“Companies have to meet their business license, because companies have to pay up before they carry out operations.”
He said that his government was working closely with the company to ensure it operates within the bauxite mining agreement.
“This is what we are doing at the moment, we have held discussions with them and told them to respect landowners, and they have to own the surface agreements, where only landowners and companies have to sign,” he said.
Bintan Mine in West Rennel is a subsidiary of the Asia Pacific Investment Development.
By: Fred Osifelo.