Temotu Nendo prospecting and/or mining issue

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DEAR EDITOR, in reference to the private view posted by Ulysis Glass published in your column issue no. 2909, it captures my “conscience and inner self” seriously as one of the rural based anti-prospecting advocator in Temotu Nendo.

Ulysis Glass was referring to the statement posted in Solomon Star Issue No. 6909 by a person from Temotu Nendo Island who is a Nurse by profession. Thumps up Ulysis! It’s nonsense professional like Leaders, Lawyers, Teachers, Nurses, Doctors, Police, promote destructive activities that threatens the land and biodiversity and jeopardize the innocent and vulnerable dwellers through T-Shirts, Poster, caps or in whatever kind.

We are protecting “Our Land, Our Blood, Our Identity, Our Culture, Our Future, Our Heritage” on behalf of the majority groups that are yet to apply their knowledge, skills, and gifted talents and wisdom to manage and use the Land in a sustainable approach to ensure its fertility is rich and promotes “equality” rather than “egocentric” through ages.

Readers, the people of Temotu Nendo can be categorized as High Class Inhabitants (HCI), Middle Class Inhabitants (MCI) and Third Class Inhabitants (TCI).

The HCI are the people who depend entirely on cash for their survival and basic needs, but also have 100% right to access and use their tribal land. Generally, this group of people makes up only about less than 15% the population of Temotu Nendo alone. Similarly, the MCI makes about 20% the population of the Island and they depend on both money and land for basic needs while the TCI makes about more than 65% the population of Temotu Nendo. In actual fact, the Third Class Inhabitants are dependents and mostly they are Children, youths, windows, old men/women and the disable. Actually, they must interact with their land of only about “519km2” and only a “dot” in the global perspective in earning their livelihood in terms of food, shelter, water, energy and other benefits every day.

Solomon Island citizens, the vulnerable group in terms of information, legal/ethical decision making, and survival through basic needs, especially food is the TCI. However, through much awareness that were conducted by our local scholars on volunteer basis about mining and logging issues at various Western Temotu Nendo communities and G/Bay Community, majority of the people now fully aware that the disadvantages of such activities outweigh the advantages it brings.

So, the Third Class Inhabitants that depends entirely on the land is calling for the HCI and MCI of Temotu Nendo and all responsible authorities to stand as one to fight the destructive human activity that will bring “dabi or dabwi’i” that can be equated as “hunger”. May I put some realistic views that I thought of why those in power have not seriously scrutinized the bases of their decisions, before!

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  1. Is there any Evacuation Bill, Evacuation Constitution, or Evacuation Act in place that permits indigenous inhabitants to migrate from their Island to Permanently Settle, Occupy, Use and Cultivate a new Land either in Solomon Islands or Foreign Country like Australia because of natural disasters like tsunami and man-made disasters like Mining?
  2. Is there any Provincial Mineral Policy, Provincial Mineral Ordinance, and Provincial Mineral Board? These are important Networks or documents that will mandate the “authority” to enforce not legal decisions, but ethical decisions for the ‘common good’ of the rural and vulnerable populace – children, old women/men, window, the blind, and the disable.

Given the views, all formal professionals must be informed that though we are one of the distinction “Eagles” and “Lions”, but if “wisdom is a NEED”, we are or will tempted to use “knowledge” and “understanding” to turn “myths and assumptions” as facts. But ethical “Eagles” and “Lions” “utilize wisdom” to make decisions because some legal decision makers think that “in legal sense the decision is right”, but “the decision is wrong in ethical sense” according to ethical decision makers.

Finally, as one of the anti-prospecting volunteer who represents the vulnerable majority, I call to the responsible ministries to draw their attention very seriously to the cry of the people whose “life” continues to grow through “land” to oppose destructive developments in our happy isles called – “Temotu Nendo” in indigenous language which can be translated as “Their Island”. Literally, morally and culturally, “Temotu Nendo” or “Their Island” means “The Island is owned by Temotu Nendo Future Generations”.

 

GOD BLESSES “TEMOTU NENDO!”

GOD BLESSES “THEIR ISLAND!”

 

MZLI. Joseph

Concerned Volunteer

LATA, Temotu Province

 

 

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