Bougainville – Another geologist killed
A GEOLOGIST from Thailand employed by a Filipino-owned mining company is dead after allegedly shot by disgruntled landowners in a remote mountainous area of Bougainville, Bougainville Police Commander Francis Tokura says.
Tokura said he was concerned because this was the second non-Bougainvillean geologists employed by a foreign-owned company to be killed in the Autonomous Region in the space of two months.
“This geologist from Thailand was killed when unknown suspects shot him with a gun at Wisai between Central and South Bougainville on Thursday (Feb 20) at about 9am,” he said.
Tokura said last Dec 13, a geologist from Enga employed by an Australian mining company was killed by landowners in Tinputz, North Bougainville. “I have now called on my police officers to conduct awareness among landowners not to bring in foreign mining companies while they are still having land disputes.
“Such killings are not good and portray a bad impression of Bougainville’s road to independence.”
Tokura said yesterday the 21-year-old Thai geologist was employed by SRMI, is a Filipino-owned company.
“He was shot in his left cheek and left arm while conducting drilling. He was rushed down to Arawa General Hospital but died on the way because the area he was shot in was in a remote and mountainous.
“The rescue party had to carry him on a makeshift stretcher and walk through rugged terrain to get to Arawa which was not an easy walk,” said Tokura.
Tokura said the Thai man was declared dead on arrival at Arawa General Hospital.