PORT MORESBY (PNG Post-Courier / Pacific Media Watch): The PNG Post-Courier has published an apology over a newspaper article and editorial last month accusing the Malaysian-owned logging company Rimbunan Hijau over alleged illegal logging operations.
The apology published today said:
"We ran a story on 24 October 2011 entitled “Pro-loggers tell visitors to get out” regarding logging operations being conducted by Gilford Limited – a subsidiary company of Rimbunan Hijau (PNG) Group (RH PNG) – in West Pomio. The story was followed up by our editorial on 28 October 2011.
In the article we wrongly reported that Gilford Limited was still operating in West Pomio in spite of a court order requiring that logging operations stop.
In the associated editorial on October 28, we stated that Gilford Limited’s continuing logging operations flouted PNG’s legal system.
"The Post-Courier acknowledges that there was in fact no court order to stop logging operations, and we recognise that neither Gilford Limited nor RH PNG was involved in any operations contrary to any court order.
"The Post-Courier has seen the orders made in National Court proceeding OS (JR) 153 of 2011 and agrees that those orders allow Gilford Limited to undertake logging activities in the area.
"The Post-Courier apologises for the incorrect accusation of illegality that the article and editorial directed towards the project.
"The Post-Courier retracts and sincerely apologises for the assertion, and for any inconvenience it may have caused Rimbunan Hijau (PNG) Group and Gilford Limited."