By PATRICK TALU
THE Morobe Mining Joint Venture is paying a one-off ex gratia compensation payments of more than K2.6 million to people along the
Watut River who are environmentally affected and displaced by the mine, The National reports. Hidden Valley
According to a statement released yesterday, payments began last week and is now into the second week.
The payments followed consultation and assessments conducted by Hidden Valley Mine Joint Venture (HVJV) through working with communities, local level and Morobe provincial government, representatives, the Mineral Resources Authority officers and other stakeholder groups.
Late last year, HVJV voluntarily committed to the communities along the
to make this payment for damage to property and gardens of value throughout the river system. Watut River
The said damage could have been partly traceable to the
mine construction period. Hidden Valley
Three teams comprising HVJV officers and the government, community and MRA along with witnesses provided by local community including the Union of Watut River communities began the task of assessments in the lower, middle and upper Watut last March.
Over the past several months, the teams have assessed more than 2,200 claims for individual compensation, with Upper and
Lower Watut receiving their payments while Middle Watut payments are still being finalised.
The payment exercise is expected to be completed by the end of next month.
According to the HVJV compensation procedure, assessments undertaken throughout the Watut River System include loss of gardens, crop trees with food or commercial value and infrastructure caused by possible increased sedimentation or over-bank flooding.