Dear Editor – We have been denied and deprived by our responsible authorities to address the legality of the logging operation in Mungihenua (West Rennell).
A lot of rubbish has been dumped into the system in order to facilitate the greed and the shellfish interest of the Asian loggers who seem to expand its money-talk dominance to captivate our Solomon Islands laws.
This is shocking for our responsible authorities who failed to address grievances of land owners that felt victim to the entry of Pacific Crest ltd in West Rennell.
Landowners are frustrated over environmental damages poses on their land by this illegal entry of Pacific Crest that unloads their heavy destructive machines destroying the coastal environment right up inland and to the interior.
There were several calls from the complaining parties since last year to the Commissioner of Forests to issue an immediate injunction order to halt 2014 harvest plan of the licensee and his contractor (Pacific Crest), unfortunately those requests fall on deaf ears and leave no option but to physically confront the Asian loggers and their so called land owners.
Spark up curiosity is our question on Commissioner’s discretion over the illegal landing site of the company which occurs right outside of the concession map granted in the Mungaba Atoll’s felling license.
What did our responsible authorities expected from our grieving parties, to take them around the uninhabited thick jungle and risky steep coastal areas of Mungihenua to show him/her the actual boundaries of the concession map before they could convince that the landing site was illegal?
We are questioning the integrity of the Commissioner’s office and his licensing department (Ministry of Forests) why they overlooked (misplacement of Mungaba Atoll’s determined concession map) important documents that necessary to identify the legality of the Pacific Crest operation in West Rennell.
If things were not procedural and confusing at this point in time then why doesn’t your authority respond to our grievances we have submitted in a written letter to your office since last year?
This is sad, we attempt to activate your mandated power but it seems that we were pressing the ‘pause’ button.
So here it plays again, the same all money-game displayed by the Asian loggers that victimized many people in Solomon Islands now took its turn in Renbell.
Renbell provincial executive and the Ministry of Forests are unhelpful and unreliable at this time to sort-out faults stemmed from their mal-administration of these logging processes in west Rennell.
Why there are several different maps claimed to be the concession area for the proposed logging?
Or is this a tactic to escape the 30 days’ notice for the grieving parties not to appeal to the Customary Land Appeal Court (CLAC)?
Well after that 30 days’ notice was served you easily went into form four (4) and form three (3) as required by the process to receive your felling license.
Well after those stages you reached to acquire your license were successful; you expand your concession map again illegally without notifying Mungihenua people about your filthy dealings with the Ministry of Forest and the ill-fated Renbell provincial executive.
You people must be kidding?
Changing concession map without public notifications signaled something unprocedural and under-table which does not help solve the situation but eventually led to reap more serious consequences if things are speculate from the lens of the Forestry Acts.
For instance, the illegal landing of the Pacific Crests machines outside the concession map and their recent construction of access road to Kagua village by trespassing in different land outside of the concession map as well, has raise more questions on the integrity of these responsible authorities.
Money-motivated decisions is depriving the rights of the poor landowners and killing this nation by denying the hard-working efforts of Solomon Islanders who strive to free this nation from corruption and self-centered attitudes.
Once again, we call on the responsible authorities to please retrieve the original concession map granted in Mugaba Atoll Certificate of Determination which clearly indicates the concession area labeled as Gagoniu land in Mungihenua district.
Then suspend the license since the contractor (Pacific Crest) has violated the Forestry Acts.