BY BEN BILUA
RESOURCE owners of Hograno have thrown their collective support behind the Government and Isabel Tripod resolution.
A joint consultation meeting in Honiara was organised by representatives of tribes who own lands in coastal and highlands of Hograno District where Sumitomo currently holds a PL and San Jorge Island identified as SIG Tendered Area 2011 and others.
The meeting endorsed all resolutions agreed by Tripod and SIG.
They further resolved that the following must be also included in any future consultations, discussions and agreements;
“Landowning tribes must be fully engaged and participate in the development of Nickel, Bauxite and any other mineral resources identified in our respective lands.
“Land identification must be done with accordance to Isabel customs and culture as advocated and applied by the Isabel Council of Chiefs.
“Landowning tribes must be supported by a legal advisor, economist and mining expert with the support of the SIG and/or Tripod.
“SIG through Tripod must promptly allocate funds for purposes of reconciliation and minerals policy awareness with the support of Landowners and landowning tribes;
“SIG must inform Landowners/ landowning tribes of the specific types of mineral resources that are identified and found in their respective lands and all members of the tribe have the right to know and be involved in the identification of genuine Developers and the Tender process in consultation with Tripod.
“In conclusion, Hograno landowners confidently notify the SIG, developers, investors and others that Tripod is a legitimate institution that represents us and our interests, let alone the interest of ALL Isabelians.
“We all agreed that our strength is in our collective understanding and concern on the way forward in terms of Nickel/ Bauxite Resource development in our respective lands, let alone the Isabel Province,” the landowners say.
The meeting was held in conjunction with the Landowners Resolution in support of (Vunivalu thaba) Tripod consultation with the Solomon Islands government earlier.