World Rainforest Movement

Women landowners in Central Bougainville block the Panguna Mine pact

Women protesters led a blockade against the Panguna copper mine to prevent the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MoA) between the Autonomous Bougainville Government (ABG) and the Bougainville Copper Limited (BCL) company. They also won a court injunction so the MoA cannot be signed until further notice. The MoA intends to allow BCL to reopen the mine before June 2019. The Panguna mine was abandoned in 1989 after a decade-long armed uprising and a movement for Bougainville independence from Papua New Guinea arose. The MoA was drawn up without the consent of the women of Panguna who are culturally the true landowners. One of the woman chiefs stated: “This is the company that has killed our sons and daughters. ABG has to stop ignoring the cries of the women and take note that BCL is never allowed to come back to Panguna, and this is final and it is not negotiable”. Read the press release (in English) at this link: