LOs welcome Govt’s announcement

Landowners from the Hides Gas Fields in Southern Highlands Province have welcomed the decision by the Government to complete the Landowner Beneficiary Identification (LOBID) program.

Hides PDL 1 landowners say they are eager to finally benefit from the LNG Project.

However, they want the Government to stick to the schedule that the state has outlined in the roll out of the program or else there will be consequences.

In a media conference today, the landowners said it has been a long time coming for the landowner identification to be completed.

They said they were happy with the announcement and will work with the government to ensure that the process is completed.

“We are looking forward to meeting these officials to complete this clan vetting process by December,” said Dickson Ango, Hides PDL 1 landowner.

“We want the National Government to stick to this timetable and we will help the National Government accomplish this project so that our people can utilise the benefit of the PNG LNG Project.”

One landowner, however, strongly stated that if the timeline was not adhered to, there would be ramifications.

“They have to honour that schedule and work on time. So before December 17 they must complete clan vetting process. If they don’t honour it, the project will go for a holiday as well,” said Wandiago Kau, Hides PDL 1.

The landowners have also requested for the presence of security personnel at Hides due to ongoing tribal clashes.

They said the presence of police and military will ensure the landowners’ identification is carried out smoothly.

“While we are waiting for the National Government to come, there is lawlessness on the ground, particular in Hides and all of Hela,” said Ango.

“While we are talking now there is tribal fighting going on. And we need to stabilise that.

“Our leaders, even those in the wards and those involved in the project area, they want government to intervene then they can take the necessary remedy to end those tribal fights.”

Cedric Patjole