Isabel tribe objects to Win Win company

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A recent mining exploration on Isabel Province. Photo by Axiom Mining Solomon Islands.
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By EDDIE OSIFELO

THE Three Brothers tribe has objected Go Win company to carry out nickel mining on their land at Suma, Isabel Province, because it is an associate company of the controversial Win Win Investment Mining Limited.

This was after Win Win company is accused of trying to smuggle 1.7kg of gold in January 2020 from its alluvial mining operation at Turarana, Central Guadalcanal, and its alleged failure to address issues such as Corporate Social Responsibility of landowners.

The Three Brothers urged the Mines and Mineral Board not to grant the transfer of shares and Mining Lease to Go Win company after it fully took over from Solomon Islands Resources Company Limited (SIRCL) three months ago.

SIRCL had carried out prospecting on Suma  after it signed a Surface Access Agreement with the landowners.

According to sources, a Hong Kong based company, New Origin owns SIRCL and New Asia that carried out operation on Suma land.

However, due to alleged financial issues faced by SIRCL, New Origin decided to sell the 100 percent shares to another Hong Kong based company, Hangzhou Gowen Mineral Product.

Hangzhou Gowen Mineral Product owns Win Win company.

One of the Directors of Win Win company, Charles Meke said according to company law, Hangzhou Gowen Mineral Product automatically owns SIRCL and New Asia after it bought the 100 percent shares.

Meke said the Foreign Investment Division and the Company Haus in the Ministry of Commerce, Industries, Labour and Immigration have also approved the change of names already.

He said the Minister of Mines, Energy and Rural Electrification, Bradley Tovosia has also approved the transfer of shares already.

Meke said currently they are waiting for the Attorney General to approve it in order to give them the Mining Lease to carry out the operation.

Further to that, he said due to Government’s fastrack policy to start mining operation to help the economy, they decided to maintain SIRCL and New Asia.

Meke said it will be a long process to go back to start engagement with landowners to get the Surface Access Agreement under a new business entity.

He said currently, the Government has hired two lawyers, Steward Tabo to deal with the three Brothers namely Martin Tango, Willie Denimana and Hugo Bugoro while Whitlam Togamae lawyer negotiates with Isabel Provincial Government.

Meke said once they get the approval of the Mining Lease from the Attorney General, they will go to the three Brothers to negotiate for Surface Access Rights to commence mining operation.

He said they had held three meetings with the Three Brothers already following three trips to Suma.

Meke said an audience was also held with  Isabel Premier and Deputy Premier last Thursday.

He said two other tenements D and E have all signed already.

“We are awaiting the Attorney General Chambers for deliberations on this progress,” he added.

However, the Three Brothers highlighted in a document the allegations that SIRCL is not a genuine prospecting or mining company.

These include:

  1. lack of expertise,
  2. poor feasibility study,
  3. false promise by Garry Cheah of a package to landowners never eventuates after they signed the SAA;
  4. landowners given employment opportunities only as securities,
  5. cleaners while the Asian occupied rest of the jobs,
  6. SIRCL failure to protect the environment after carried out excavation on the land and
  7. lack of consultation with the three brothers.

The document said the Feasibility Study it submitted to accompany its Mining Lease is “very, very poor”.

“This is the conclusion of the Australian consultant Derisk Geomining Consultants that reviewed the Feasibility Study,” it said.

The document states the Commercial discovery produced and announced by SIRCL was solely based on a pitting excavation programme.

“This is a very old method employed to evaluate any mineral resource.

“SIRCL unknowingly excluded historical quality assay information recently generated by Axion as well,” it said.

“This only proves their inexperience and poor knowledge of mining.

“Not only this, SIRCL analysed these samples using a hand held XRF equipment, which is totally unacceptable in resource/reserve calculations,” it said.

The document states no Government should accept such Commercial Discovery reports under such circumstances/scenarios.”

As such, the three brothers claimed in the document that Win Win’s application for Mining Lease should therefore be deemed unacceptable and rejected as required by legislation since it cannot comply with the requirements after being requested to revise and improve these submissions.

Furthermore, it states SIRCL, after failing to comply with these requirements, or having performed poorly is now passing the buck to another company with no appropriate mining experience and with dirty mining deals in front of their eyes.


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