Showing posts with label illegal aliens. Show all posts
Showing posts with label illegal aliens. Show all posts

COP26 Logging Cartels Operating in Papua New Guinea - UNEDITED TRANSCRIPT


We have to concede, Mutang, that we lost all you lost to a large extent the battle against the loggers and their corrupt politician allies in Sarawak that you know over that period leading up to the end of the last century. Now, what did those loggers do after they made their first billions? 

As I explained they spread their tentacles into any other forested areas they could and one of the biggest lures, one of the biggest you know areas to get in before anyone else did was Gary’s territory of Papua New Guinea.

Gary when did these guys these same families these are companies um you know from Cebu, that's a town in Sarawak um mainly populated by you know long-established families originally from mainland China, who had you know the very well-known business region of mainland China um with very astute and ruthless reputation actually um these are family companies they married into each other. 

I actually think quite often of the Sicilian mafia when I’m looking for a uh an equivalent um they then arrived the same family members the same companies at your door, didn't they Gary? When was that round about the 1990s?

Actually they came in in the 1980s mid-1980s. And uh and how did they transform lives in your area Well we had a logging industry, a forestry industry, I would say in Papua New Guinea and it was you know basically the companies were from Japan, Australia, New Zealand and America and they did what uh companies ought to do which is to abide by the laws of a nation, wherever they are operating in. So they respected these laws which dictated where they could carry out deforestation activities, where they couldn't and they actually went into downstream processing.

They actually went into downstream processing and they had you know wood pulp mills plywood meals etc and there was a massive reforestation program that was managed by the department of forestry until the Malaysian cartels came into Papua New Guinea. 

When they (the Malaysian Cartels) came in they immediately displaced those legitimate companies that were operating in the forestry sector and soon enough these companies packed up and left because they just couldn't operate in this environment where they were intimidated, where they couldn't get permits where they were not treated fairly and eventually they packed up and that downstream processing industry was completely dismantled and replaced with a round log export.

You know philosophy that was perpetrated by the Malaysian timber companies. Then we saw some very interesting things happen which you know on the face of it you can't really tell but if you go into details and if you scrutinize what was actually happening you would see a systematic development of a perverted system whereby the various government departments responsible for checks and balances were compromised.

So permits and licenses would only go to these particular companies and you know and in record speed, without following the due processes for example there was no free prior informed consent from landowners. You know 97 (per cent) of the land in Papua New Guinea is owned by clans and what they would do is they would target individuals within these clans compromise them and then use the perverted system that they created in the government.

 They would then gain access to this forest. They even I would I’m stating here from my own analysis of what happened, they even went through the process of carrying out government reforms deliberately so that they could access timber in areas which they couldn't originally access. In the first place, for instance, provinces used to have a huge say in regards to what type of companies would operate in their jurisdiction. Well reforms were carried out in 95 they called them you know provincial government reforms and they basically allowed the centralizing of permits and licenses to be made from Wagani by the national government which were easily accessed by these companies then they could access the provinces and their forest which they couldn't previously do so.

That this is you know that's my knowledge of how they first entered Papua New Guinea and what they started to do well is what we're effectively talking about is um the systematic corruption of a country. Isn't it?

Read about illegal logging in Papua New Guinea


Logging companies must now pay for their crimes against our environment, our country, and our people.

I saw first-hand the damages logging companies are doing to the natural forests (and plants and animals) and the river systems in parts of New Guinea Ireland. It is a case of You never know till you see It. And the distractions caused by the logging companies are much bigger than we imagined.  PNG govt has got stop the logging operations in the country. 

PNG Insight photo | The importance of International Forest Day

Why complete ban on logging is urgent

In 2019 and 2020 I visited the provincial town of Namatanai in the New Ireland Province and Kimbe in the West New Britain Province. I fell in love with the natural wonders of the provinces. It was just stunning. 

You'll know what I mean if you know about the 'Bilas Peles' and 'Oil Palm Country'.

The rivers are crystal-clear blue. You can tell how healthy the forests and habitats are. 

But, I also saw the damages logging companies have done. Complete destruction of the forests and natural surroundings. The logging ships parked out in the sea and tugboats doing rounds, unloading logs. Even at night.

Read about illegal logging in Papua New Guinea


The locals call the foreign loggers, pirates. They live onboard the massive logging carriers, load the logs and take off.

Forestry Authority, provincial govt or the national govt care less

Drove past the Pinakin Roadside market along the Buluminskey highway back to Kavieng Town. And two Toyota Lancruisers parked on the roadside, Men in Uniform. The guide told me that they were the mobile squad from the Rabaul Tomaringa Barracks here on Logging Assignment.

It saddens me that some logging companies can do that:

  • running bulldozers up the delicates limestone rocks, clear-fell the trees,
  • destroying the natural habitats, the streams and river systems; and 
  • getting police to watch over the logging operation.
Inadvertently, one seems to care. Not even the provincial govt or the national govt. 

The impacts of logging an area of forest is obvious like day light. 

I saw what the logging companies have done to the pristine waters of New Ireland and West New Britain Provinces. Once, there was no mud in the river systems. You can literally jump in and slash and the water remained crystal-clear. 

The waters are no more clear. The river banks are covered in Mud. It may look clean on the surface. One splash and it turn murky.

The loggers have been doing a lot of damage than imagined

After the visit, I have been tweeting my frustrations about the destruction done to the environment by the logging companies. It is not nice. It is inhumane. And, it should stop. 

Today, it is reassuring that a govt body has put the logging 'pirates' under the spotlight. When we talk about logging companies, it is not just about tax evasion or tax exemption. No. 

It is about the natural beauty of our beautiful country. And, I think Dr Ketan put it nicely. The logging companies must pay for their crimes - crimes committed against the PNG govt and also the crimes they caused against nature.

 - We reproduce Dr Ketan article below, you can also see my tweets at the end of this article - 

Logging companies must now pay for their crimes against our environment, our country, and our people by Dr. Joseph Ketan

IRC Commissioner Sam Koim has a reputation for going after the big crooks in Papua New Guinea. After serving his legal apprenticeship at Justice Department, Mr Koim was handpicked by former prime minister Peter O’Neill to investigate and prosecute corrupt politicians and their foreign cronies. Mr Koim demonstrated diligence in his work by prosecuting crooked public officeholders. He took a step further by investigating his political boss, the prime minister, which ultimately cost him his job as head of Task Force Sweep.

Now, after being appointed IRC Commissioner by the current prime minister James Marape, Mr Koim promises us that he is going after the Malaysian timber cartel, an obnoxious gang of tax evaders, who have been corrupting PNG politicians and public servants over the last 40 years to steal billions of dollars through transfer pricing and false declarations on the value of logs for export.

The IRC must be thorough and ruthless in its approach to weeding out corruption with the forest industry. A 1980s inquiry into the forest industry by Justice Tos Barnett uncovered widespread corruption involving a deputy prime minister, parliamentarians, and departmental heads working in partnership with the Sia brothers and other Malaysians to steal money from the country.

All corrupt PNG politicians and public servants were named in the reports by Tos Barnett. Veteran PNG journalist Harlyne Joku and the Times newspaper editor Anna Solomon published a series of reports on corruption within the forest industry. I have published the names of crooked PNG government officials in a chapter of a book edited by Michael Rynkiewich of the Melanesian Institute.

Papua New Guineans tend to have collective amnesia on corrupt officials, so we need to constantly remind readers of the past sins of our leaders.

Sam Koim knows that state agencies and the officials who work within them have aided and abetted the work of crooked foreign businessmen. The Malaysian loggers were brought into this country by Michael Somare and other politicians. RH is at the forefront of destructive logging in this country. It owns the Vision City Mall as well as the Stanley Hotel, in addition to other companies. It will require the most skilled and imaginative auditors to trace the trail of transfers of funds from one company to another through a series of Holding companies and offshore accounts.

We need to set an example to deter crooks from robbing us in future. Lock up the big foreign crooks, including facilitators within PNG, and nationalize all assets acquired through fraud. The logging companies must now pay for their crimes against our environment, our country, and our people.

//Ends

Illegal logging in PNG
Image: Oakland Institute

PNG Insight Tweets on Logging and Distructions of Forests




 

PNG VISA AND PASSPORT: FIVE (5) KEY CHANGES to IMMIGRATION and CITIZENSHIP SERVICES 2017

SOURCE: NBC News 14th September 2017
The Minister for Immigration and Border Security has announced a number of changes to improve fraud detection and abuse in migration services in the country.


A statement by Minister Petrus Thomas, says the changes, which will come into effect over the next few weeks, will also include a system to improve revenue collection for the PNG Immigration and Citizenship Service Authority.

Top among the changes is a direction to