BY SAMIE WAIKORI
REPRESENTATIVE members of various conservation groups in Are Are and Kwaio were privileged to learn the Protected Areas Act 2010.
This was during a meeting held with two lawyers from Landowners’ Advisory Legal Support Unit (LALSU) under Public Solicitor and Solomon Islands Environmental Law Association last Friday at Waisurione in West Are Are.
The lawyers were part of a team led by Po’otori Araata People’s Foundation (PAPF) from Honiara holding general awareness in Hauhui village that was blocked by villagers.
After encountered with the challenge the team met with conservation group members of Mai Maasina Green Belt gathered at Waisurione village.
The lawyers are Mr Steneth Kaniki from SIELA and Mr William Kadi from LALSU who brought some insight of Protected Areas act 2010 to the groups.
The two young lawyers and Malaita provincial Environment Officer, Mr Allen Kisi presented talk mainly on processes to pursue resources/lands to be protected under PA act.
This is however the ultimate goal of the conservation groups together with Mai Maasina Green Belt as they are working towards protecting their resources under the act.
The lawyers said the PA act is a legal tool and has processes to follow before resources can be protected.
They said it’s not easy to pursue steps (processes) required by the act as a lot of challenges can be met.
“One area the act advocates for amongst others especially during process to pursue the act is to provide proper consultation with resource owners on the idea.
“The important thing here is to press on despite challenge and work together with resource owners to achieve it.
“To conserve your resources under the act is a benefit for your communities, resource owners and the government.
“Who knows the initiative might encourage scientific studies, eco-tourism and other green developments,” one lawyer said.
The lawyer said the purpose of the act is to protect resources from destructive developments like logging and mining that can ruin the resources.
He reiterated that the act provided legal processes to follow in going after it in a passive way to the best interest of resource owners.