Johnson Tuke

Minister yet to access audit report

Western Governor Taboi Awi Yoto asked the Minister when the report will be tabled because he needed to access the funds for development projects in the province.

“I understand there is moratorium on the trust account and a legal case. But I believe also that the report is ready so when will it be tabled? And how soon can I access the funds for development purposes?” Governor Yoto asked in Parliament last week.

Caretaker minister meets with senior public servants

Speaking at The Holiday Inn ballroom this morning, Minister Johnson Tuke told heads of departments and state agencies under his care that they must work with the new government to achieve the visions and goals set by Prime Minister James Marape to ensure that PNG becomes a “rich black Christian nation” based upon principles of honesty, truth and sheer hard work.

Minister Tuke also asked those present to “earn their living on an honest pay” as stated by PM Marape in his inauguration speech to the country.

Madang LOs call for royalty

The four major landowner chairmen met with the Minister for Mining, Johnson Tuke, recently to air their grievances.

In a meeting recently held in Port Moresby, the landowners from the Kurumbukari, Basamuk, Basamuk Coastal Pipeline and Maijuri inland pipeline urged Minister Tuke to give them feedback on their overdue royalty payments since the beginning of the project in 2013.

Toby Bare, chairman of Kurumbukari Landowners Association, said the landowners have been waiting patiently for the past years for the Government to hear their plight but nothing has been forthcoming.

Minister Tuke visits mines

Tuke has so far visited two operating mines and one anticipated mine.

The Minister said the visits are to have an appreciation of what is happening on the ground in the various mine and project sites.

So far he has visited OK Tedi Mine in Western Province as well as the proposed Frieda Mine Project in West Sepik.

His first visit was to the Kainantu Gold Mine, in his electorate, due to discontent by landowners which suspended operations.

Minister Tuke helped address the issue which has now stabilised.

Tuke unaware of locals’ ultimatum

Johnson Tuke said he was not aware of it when contacted by Loop PNG.

Yesterday, chairman of the Yulai Landowners Group, George Gusi, announced on social media the ultimatum, which lapses on Nov 20, for the withdrawal of the licence from Asidokona.

When contacted by Loop PNG, he said landowners would shut the mine down if the ultimatum was not met.

Gusi claims Asidokona does not have the capacity to operate the mine.

The chairman previously snubbed the signing of the Memorandum of Agreement (MOA).

Electricity generation for mining operations overdue

Mining Minister Johnson Tuke said this during a meeting with Era Resources Inc (ERI) and Global Operations officials on Monday.

The officials include ERI director Sir Rabbie Namaliu and vice-president for Global Operations, Andre Wessels.

“Previous governments have always been focused on the transmission side of electricity and not power generation and therefore it’s pretty tough now to address the current power generation issues that are in the country, not only in the mining sector but in other areas as well,” Tuke said.

​Revised mining act will be passed: Minister

Tuke said the revised Mining Act, which contains six new laws, will immediately be brought before the National Executive Council for endorsement.

The Minister announced this during a Ministry handover-takeover ceremony in Port Moresby.

He takes on the role of Mining Minister from former Namatanai MP, Byron Chan.

In his maiden speech as Mining Minister, Tuke said he will ensure the new law is passed by the end of the year. This also includes the Mineral Resources Authority Act (2005) review.

​Alluvial mining policy to be developed

He announced on Tuesday that the alluvial policy was one of the main policy initiatives for the industry as part of his first 100 days in office.

Tuke said there is a huge potential for the industry and proper frameworks must be established to manage it well.

“I have directed the Department of Mineral Policy and Geohazards Management (DMPGM) to work with the Mineral Resource Authority, to develop a policy for the alluvial mining sector in PNG.