Thursday, January 27, 2011

Agiru: I didn't make any commitments

ONE politician accused by Hides 4 landowner leaders of making commitments which the government cannot meet, yesterday threw out the accusations against him as “absolute lies” and without basis, The National reports.

Southern Highlands Governor Anderson Agiru challenged the leaders to name the specific instances when he had made any commitments to them.

On Tuesday, Erick Ayule, chairman of Girira Hides 4 Joint Venture, the umbrella company

of Hides 4 PDL 7, claimed that Agiru had promised landowner chiefs from PDL7 K1 million each at the Kokopo umbrella benefits sharing agreement meeting and at the license based benefits sharing agreement meetings.

The governor angrily reputed this yesterday and said he never made commitments which his own government had not budgeted for nor obligation to pay.

Agiru said: “I have never made any commitments to any body relating to the LNG and certainly nothing in the amounts spoken off.

“I do not make commitments that I cannot deliver.

“In fact, I have been angry with ministers who have made commitments in the millions of kina without the money being budgeted for.”

He said a payment of K2 million had been paid to chiefs of Hiwa and Tuguba of PDL1 (Kutubu) after the LBBSA talks on their assertion that they had protected the licence area.

“That was paid by Waigani to the chiefs, not I,” Agiru said.

“I defend my people’s right to everything that is rightly owed to them and which has not been coming to them but I will not ask for another toea more or give them anything just because they ask for it.

“That would not be right.

“They ought to know by now that I do not hand out money or make commitments I can not deliver.”

Agiru said government ought to appoint only one person now to be the person responsible for LNG so that landowners as well as the operator and joint venture partners knew who to approach with any issue pertaining to the project.

He said presently there were too many ministers involved in the project and that it would be very easy for anyone to be confused, particularly landowners.


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