For years they have been trading outside retail outlets however they are now insisting on the Kainantu Urban Local Level Government and the District Development Authority (DDA) to finance the construction of a building in which they can use as a gold-buying centre.
Spokesmen Mike Kegono, George Nakari and Jim Rink said the urban LLG and the DDA, headed by the local MP Johnson Tuke “had promised to build a house for us but so far nothing has happened.”
“We have contributed immensely to Kainantu’s fragile economy and cash flow. We create market for the alluvial gold miners, we bring money direct to Kainantu by selling gold to outside buyers.
“Therefore, the level of cash flow in Kainantu is higher in comparison to other such towns in the country and yet government authorities have seen fit to let us stand in the unbearable midday heat to buy gold,” they told the Post-Courier in Kainantu.
Not only Bilimoia but other parts of the district including Agarabi, Kamano One, Kamano Two and Obura-Tairora) have certain percentages of gold deposits which locals mine for sale to the buyers in town.
The spokesmen are also appealing to provincial governor Peter Numu to help fund the building infrastructure.
Mr Tuke, who is also mining minister, said he was unaware of the buyers’ request.
“My DDA did not make any commitment to build a house for the gold buyers,” Mr Tuke said.
Attempts to call Kainantu town mayor Lyn David Alike were unsuccessful.
Twenty-eight local gold buyers were sitting in front of three retained outlets in Kainantu with calculators and mini electronic scales, when the Post-Courier arrived at the scene on Friday to speak to them. Post Courier