Home > Corruption, Human rights, Land, Logging, Papua New Guinea > Is it time to label Kanawi Pouru as corrupt?

Is it time to label Kanawi Pouru as corrupt?

November 13, 2011 Leave a comment Go to comments

PNG Forest Authority Managing Director Kanawi Pouru was welcomed into his role several years ago as a reformer and someone who would clean out the corruption and sleaze and stand-up to the logging industry.

But not only is there just as much illegal logging now as there was when he took the MD role, the SABL Commission of Inquiry is revealing that under Pouru’s watch illegal logging has now expanded to include the clear-felling of forests for bogus agriculture projects.

In October Kanawi Pouru went on the record to defend the logging operations of Rimbunan Hijau in Pomio, claiming the logger had passed all legal hurdles and that if it had not complied its logging application would have been rejected.

But the Commission of Inquiry has revealed that signatures have been forged, children as young as three-years old have been listed as agreeing to the logging, logging agreements have never been explained to local people and the benefits they will receive are unfair.

At the same time the PNG Forest Authority has already lost two legal cases over the illegal allocation of the 800,00 hectare Kamula Doso logging concession to Rimbunan Hijau but continues to fight against a third case. It is also defending in the courts its allocation of the East Awin concession to Rimbunan Hijau.

If Mr Kanawi cannot admit that logging rights have been given out unlawfully, despite the evidence from the Commission of Inquiry and the decisions of the courts and is happy to not only continue to defend Rimbunan Hijau but hand out ever more Forest Clearance Authorities then he is choosing his place in history and deserves to be labelled as corrupt.

This is not to say he has necessarily accepted corrupt payments from the logging industry, that is for others to investigate and prove, but to take his salary (which is paid by the people of PNG) and accept the status of his position and to do nothing to stop the illegal rape of our forests, the environmental destruction and the human rights abuses, and to facilitate there expansion into new areas, Mr Pouru rightly deserves to be labelled as corrupt.

Come on Mr Pouru, don’t let the loggers drag your name down the drain, NOW is the time to stand up or your reputation will be lost for ever.

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  1. Karsie
    November 14, 2011 at 10:33 am

    I totally agree with the comment. I have always wondered if Mr Pouru was so serious about the interest of the indigenous people and their environment. I just did not agree with his public defense of the issue and to me he is unfit and must be investigated and, if found guilt, put behind bars.

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