Police arrest 11 in relation to incident
By EDDIE OSIFELO
ELEVEN people attacked a Chinese worker at Gold Ridge mine site in Central Guadalcanal last Thursday, leaving him in serious condition.
Guadalcanal Police have arrested the 11 suspects; they are remanded to appear to face their charges in court.
Reports Island Sun obtained said the 11 suspects attacked the Chinese worker because they were angry over payments and repatriation packages.
However, Benjamin Afuga of Goldridge Communities Investment Ltd (GCIL), a landowner group that holds 10 per cent share in Gold Ridge Mining Ltd (GRML), told Island Sun the attack has nothing to do with the mine’s operation.
Rather, Afuga said it was a criminal attack committed by drunken youths.
“These drunken youths forced their way through the pit gate,” Afuga explained.
“The two China Railway workers (who were attacked) were on their way to the Pits when the group stopped them,” he added.
“On the way the youths stopped the vehicle so the two contractors stopped and got off, but when they were about to take off, one of the youths them kicked the vehicle.
“It was when the two workers came out to enquire that they were attacked.
“The youths took off with the vehicle but abandoned it when security chase them.
“The vehicle sustained damage and the two expat workers received injuries.”
Afuga said the GRLM management will meet over the incident today.
Meanwhile, Guadalcanal Police have also arrested two suspects that disturbed the work of China Civil Engineering Construction Corporation (CCECC) on Monga bridge in east Guadalcanal.
GP police made the arrest following an early morning raid at the village, however other suspects fled the scene.
Hong Kong listed Wanguo hold the majority shares in GRML, which was shut down during the ethnic conflict.
According to past media reports, Wanguo has contracted state-owned China State Railway Group $825 million to complete the works over several phases.
The previous owner, Australian-listed St. Barbara, sold the mine for a nominal $100 to GCIL in 2015, which went on to secure interest from Australian-based Chinese company AXF Resources, and then Wanguo.