Sefton Darby Talks North & South, Far North and East Side

Posted by Gold FM on 14/06/2012

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North and South magazine have published a 12 page article about mining in Waihi. Titled 'Living On A Mine Field', the writer Jim Robinson has (in our view) presented a balanced article that offers the reader a range of opinions and facts that will give people from within Waihi and further afield an opportunity to read an honest assessment of the situation.

Hauraki District Council Mayor John Tregidga discusses issues that have and will affect the town's future. He says Waihi town is doing better than it's neighbours and asserts that the community is getting "real benefit from the mining" on one hand, and also talks about the very real angst that some residents are feeling because of the plans to extend mining, which includes underground mining in a residential area.

The points of view expressed in the article are wide and varied and Newmont gets to detail their objectives and fortify it's position. Underground Manager Charlie Gawith asserts "this is one of the best mines in the world", and Newmont External Affairs Manager Sefton Darby acknowledges that "the community is very frustrated", but points out that the work Newmont has been doing regarding the draft Property and Community Investment Policy is separate from anything else and is a "goodwill gesture".

Green MP Catherine Delahunty, who is opposed to further mining, questions the need for more gold and said "we're at a turning point on what our values are. Are we really serious about sustainable communities?"

Some of the residents from Waihi East who have been consulting with Newmont were also given the opportunity to talk about their concerns and views about the uncertainties the future holds for them, their properties and their well being. Ruth Ordish questions the possibilities for her situation, which is probably a good reflection of how a lot of residents who could be affected feel.

Jo Devlin raises her concerns about property values, and has a wait and see attitude to the PCIP because in her opinion "it needs more work, "it's got no meat on it yet". She's obviously passionate about Waihi and labelled the often heard "if it wasn't for the mine there'd be no town here" as rubbish.

Freelance journalist Paula Trubshaw has written an essay that accompanies the article and it's worth a read for it's colour and clever use of words.

Sefton Darby came into the Gold FM studios this morning and chatted with Brian Gentil about the article and answered a few questions. You can listen to the interview here.

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