Solomon Islands: Communities accuse Pacific Bauxite of coercion into signing away land rights, company denies allegations
Author: Ben Doherty, Guardian, Published on: 10 July 2017
"Pacific Bauxite accused of tricking Solomon Islanders over mining rights"
An Australian mining company [Pacific Bauxite] is embroiled in a standoff with landowners in the Solomon Islands over allegations it coerced, bullied and tricked communities into signing over prospecting rights to their land. [The] government [of Temotu province] has been overthrown [allegedly due to the premier's refusing to] grant a business licence to Pacific Bauxite...and local landowners have taken to blocking the roads with stones, and even reportedly confronting miners with bows and arrows, to thwart prospecting on their island of Nendo. The miner...denied any allegations of impropriety and said it had worked in close consultation with landowners who overwhelmingly supported their work...Several Nendo residents have said [that] dozens of landowners across the island had withdrawn their authorisation for Pacific Bauxite to prospect on their land. The company [on the other hand] said it was not aware of any landowners withdrawing their consent and that it remained committed to consulting with all owners...So far it has engaged only in hand-augered prospecting [in Temotu province].
Related companies: Pacific Bauxite