“We Do Not Wish to be Slaves on Our Own Lands”
Papua New Guinea in focus ⬿

“We Do Not Wish to be Slaves on Our Own Lands”

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John Ahni Schertow
December 10, 2013
 

Adelbert Gangai from the Maisin tribe discusses a looming threat from a palm oil company that would destroy the subsistence way of life his people have have maintained since time immemorial.

Please sign this petition to support Adelbert and others in the Collingwood Bay community, Papua New Guinea.

You can read more from Adelbert below, courtesy of the Rainforest Action Network

My name is Adelbert Gangai. I am from the Maisin tribe and work with the nine tribes from the Collingwood Bay region of Papua New Guinea. Our culture is intrinsically entwined and our livelihoods are entirely dependent on the primary forests and pristine marine environment that surrounds us.

But recently there is a threat that a palm oil company called KLK will destroy the subsistence life style we have maintained since time immemorial by attempting to illegally develop over 100,000 acres of our customary lands against our will.

Our chiefs issued a rare joint communiqué in 2010 voicing the consensus of the residents of Collingwood Bay – who total over 7,000 people from 326 clans in 22 villages scattered across our coastline – that we do not wish to have palm oil plantations established on our land under any circumstances.

Will you stand with us and send a message today to KLK’s principal banker – HSBC – asking it to use its influence to urge KLK to stop these misguided plans before this controversy escalates into a full blown conflict?

[…]

We have witnessed what has happened to other communities in Papua New Guinea and around the world whose lands have been developed with oil palms. They have been marginalized and become slaves on their own land. We do not wish this for the people of Collingwood Bay.

Our communities have fought and won against multinational corporations trying to develop our lands before. With your help, we will prevail in preserving this special place once again.

Thank you so much for your support,

Adelbert Gangai

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