Mt Kasi landowners disagree with Government’s decision

Minister for Lands and Mineral Resources Jone Usamate with his team on top of Mt Kasi. Picture: SUPPLIED/FACEBOOK

Mount Kasi mining prospect landowners do not agree with Government’s decision in awarding the development tender to Vatukoula Gold Mines Ltd.

Cakaudrove villagers of Dawara say they would not allow company officials to access the site which sits on their land.

Mataqali Naveitokaki spokesman Emori Bukadina said they would not sign the Access and Compensation Agreement which was required before exploration.

“Our request and wishes were made known to the Government on many occasions in 2020 not to award the tender to VGML but our request has been ignored,” he said.

“We will not be denied our land rights and we will not be forced into accepting a decision that we feel so strongly against.

“No prior consultations were conducted with us regarding the investor or developer and we were only informed when the decision was made.”

Mineral Resources acting director Raymond Mohammed said they stood by comments by the Minister for Lands and Mineral Resources Jone Usamate.

Mr Usamate said his team had met with the landowners regarding the development of Mt Kasi.

He added that they were open to discussions and were willing to meet with landowners on this matter.

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