Rawang youth awaits government reply for Fortuna Metals case

San Lat / June 6, 2020

A mining site near Khaunglanphu town / NSYA

A Rawang youth organization based in Putao town of Burma’s northern Kachin State called Northern Spectrum Youth Association (NSYA) urged the Burmese Union government to respond the Khaunglanphu residents’ petition against the mining concession given to Fortuna Metals, reiterating the local voices of one of the country’s remote township.

We haven’t received any official and direct reply from the Union government, Hpungraw Hpi Nan, the president of NSYA told The Kachin Post. “We’d like the government to know our rationale.” NSYA is responsible for organizing and collecting signatures from Khaunglanphu residents for the petition against the Fortuna Metals’ over 300,000 acres mining site around town.

Northern Spectrum Youth Association sent an official letter to the Burmese President Win Myint, the State Counsellor Aung San Suu Kyi and the Burma Army’s Commander-in-Chief Senior Gen. Min Aung Hlaing regarding local petition against Fortuna Metals mining concession for ten years contracts. NSYA collected over 1,600 signatures for the petition, saying the Burmese president and the State Counsellor should reconsider the mining concession given to the Australian based Fortuna Metals, according to the association’s letter.

We are worry that the ecosystem would be seriously damaged by the mining and the local are very upset of the government decision to grant Fortuna Metals to conduct mining operation in Khaunglanphu township, said Hpungraw Hpi Nan.

NSYA letter said that many of Khaunglanphu residents were not properly informed about the mining project and the local will not accept the environmental damages which would caused by the mining. There will be conflict between the local and mining company in the future, the letter stated.

The locals deserve to be informed thoroughly before granting the mining concession, a Khaunglanphu resident Joe Peram told The Kachin Post. The locals are so nervous that over 300,000 acres of mining project would take over their hunting and forest land, he said.

Northern Spectrum Youth Association was founded in 2018. The non-profit association is conducting the capacity building and awareness campaign for local people in northern Kachin State.