LOGGERS, MINERS ACCUSED

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Illegally felled Tubi logs at Korona log pond.
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Survey claims they are behind intention to extend parliament

By EDDIE OSIFELO

LOGGERS and miners are believed to influence the DCGA Government to extend Parliament life from four to five years.

About 46 percent of respondents strongly agreed in a survey carried out by Transparency Solomon Islands between March 16 and April 1, 2022.

The interviews were by phone, face to face and online reaching 1,248 respondents.

On Facebook group pages 930 respondents were reached. A total of 2,178 respondents participated in the survey.

“The DCGA government has been strongly influenced by loggers who get away with breaching our laws.

“The investors in the Extractive Industry have got the government system, the Executive Government, and public institutions in their pockets,” they said.

“They have corrupted our timber rights processes, the courts and those in leadership and it is not beyond them to have a hand in this.

“The fact that almost (80 percent) of all the logs harvested in Solomon Islands are exported to China, there is no doubt they argued a connection here, all the more reason for the extension not to be allowed,” they said.

The 27 percent strongly disagreed with loggers, miners having an influence on the proposed extension.

“They are of the view that unless the people stand up and say enough is enough, the loggers regardless of who is in power will always find a way of corrupting them and having the government system, officials, politicians eating out of their pockets and dancing to their tune,” they said.

“The country needs a complete change of leadership.

“The Prime Minister has shown that he has very little regard for people’s views, suffering, the loss of their resources, and inequitable sharing of benefits arising from the exploitation of their resources and needs to step down,” they said.

“Loggers, miners, businesses should refrain from influencing Solomon Islands political outcomes.

“Stronger laws are needed to address current experiences with these unscrupulous investors,” they said.

“It is time government admits and acknowledges that most benefits from the exploitation of the natural resources of this country are not poured back into the development of Solomon Islands,” they said.

“The influence of certain loggers, they say, has become very powerful.

“Just most recently Mines minister Bradley Tovosia granted Johny Sy of Bulacan logging company to log the protected Tubi species in Choiseul, and customary resources owners of tubi in Isabel were prevented by the High Court from exporting the tubi that was logged using fake gazette,” they said.

“This in their view shows just how deep the loggers and miners have corrupted our government system, and public institutions, including the judiciary,” they said.


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