By Godwin Eki – EMTV News, Port Moresby
As early as 5am yesterday (May 20), a fight broke out between 5 Mile residents and guards of security firm Black Swan International (BSI). EMTV was told that the fight escalated after a Black Swan security vehicle pulled up behind a resident backing out of his driveway, and refusing to move. This led to an exchange of punches between members of the security firm and residents.
Several BSI security guards and residents of 5 Mile community were badly injured during the brawl, some with severe wounds. St John Ambulance arrived on scene to provide medical assistance and transported casualties of Black Swan to the hospital.
Residents say this is not the first time a fight has broken out between the community and BSI security guards. In past incidents, resident say they were quick to solve the issue. They said yesterdays fight was the worst yet. Residents fear that if an understanding and proper communication is not established between them and the security firm, the worst that can happen, is for lives to be lost in another conflict.
5 Mile resident Lina Jero, claims she witnessed her husband being attacked by Black Swan Security guards. In her account, the fight erupted after a Black Swan vehicle parked in front of her husband’s car refusing to give way. The incident escalated after her husband and son retaliated, sustaining severe wounds in the process. She says the security company has been known to park their vehicles on the main road, making it hard for commuters and residents to pass through. She said often about twenty to thirty Black Swan vehicles would park on one lane of the road causing traffic congestion.
Community Rep Iso Limlim is appealing to NCD Governor Powes Parkop, Member for North East John Kaupa and Black Swan International to discuss a possible relocation.
Police Task Force Commander, Inspector Mark Mosinakave was present to mediate and settle the argument. He says further investigations will be carried out; hopefully to resolve the issue once and for all and prevent similar brawls in the future. He said a meeting will be called next week to discuss a resolution.
The community hopes to also meet with Mr Kaupa, NCD Governor Parkop, members of the Transport Department and representatives from Black Swan International to air their concerns.
Black Swan International refused to comment on the matter.