Argument on Ramu nickel spillage continues

Madang Governor Peter Yama continues to condemn the Management of Ramu NiCo for questioning the involvement of an independent scientist into the waste spillage incident.

Yama said the findings of Dr Alex Mojon on the Ramu nickel spill into Basamuk Bay in August cannot be disputed.

He stressed that Dr Alex Mojon was a professional environmental scientist who is known all over the world; his investigation cannot be overlooked.  

“If this country can gamble with money and the lives of my people, I say ‘no it won’t happen!’” said Yama.

“It’s my province and my home. I am mandated by my people. And I will stand by my people.”

Dr Mojon carried out the investigations on the waters around the Madang areas before and after the Basamuk Refinery August 24 slurry spill, and reported that the sea water and general environment were impacted by the operation. He said all samples tested contained toxic levels of heavy metal contamination.

Dr Mojon indicated that if Ramu NiCo wants a second look into the incident, he is willing to be part of their team to carry out samples again and send to laboratory for testing.

“I am also friendly to the industry, to the mines and petroleum industry,” stated the environmental scientist.

“They are part of the economy. If they respect all laws and regulations, including the environment, then I am a friend of them. If not, I am enemy of them and that’s why the mine should be closed.”

On Friday, Ramu NiCo management released a statement and brushed aside claims by Dr Alex Mojon engaged by the Madang provincial Government to carry out investigation on the waste spillage from the Basamuk refinery.

The management said Dr Mojon was not authorised by Conservation and Environment Protection Authority (CEPA) to conduct the investigation.

The Company stated that the release of the report by the Swiss scientist for Madang Provincial Government is ill-timed and in direct defiance of an official government sanctioned report through CEPA whose findings are yet to be presented.

(Dr Alex Mojon)

Freddy Mou