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Progress in the restoration of peace in Porgera-Paiela district after warring clans agreed to lay down arms and return to their respective tribal homes.

Representatives of the Nomali and Kungirine clans gave undertaking to cease fighting in the presence of a high ranking visiting police delegation.

The event was initiated by the Member for Porgera-Paiela Maso Karipe, with the support of the Porgera Crisis Management team and stakeholder partners being the Restoring Justice Initiative (RJI), Porgera Landowners Association (PLOA), Lease for Mining Purpose Landowners Association (LMPLOA) and the disciplinary call out contingents.

The undertaking to cease fighting was done in the presence of a high ranking visiting police delegation led by Deputy Police Commissioner Donald Yamasombi, Assistant Commissioner of Police Samson Kua, Assistant Commissioner of Police Policy and Planning Dr Philip Mitna and Enga Provincial Police Commander Superintendent George Kakas.

The member for Pogera Paiela Maso Karipe was blunt in his address to the warring factions, to cease all fighting immediately as the mine prepares to go into restart.

 “There is no other person behind you. You yourselves are the landowners of this valley. If you decide to end the fighting now it will end. We will not talk about how it all started, that’s in the past, we will talk about what we are going to do from here on, the government’s concern is getting the mine restarted. If you stop fighting, the mine will progress to restart. We have to think about the future from here on and not what’s happened already.” Karipe stated.

Mr Karipe also gave notice for warring tribesmen illegally occupying houses of public servants in Paiam or any property of the government.

“Public servants must come back, the hospital must reopen, school children must go to school, employees must return. State property is state property. Normalcy must return to Porgera,” he said.

Nomali spokesperson Poo Wapope openly called for the Kungurine Clan to return to Paiam and settle back on their land, giving assurance that he will do the same to return to Kairik and cease all fighting.

“The government is here and want to end the fighting. We have suffered and want the mine to restart so we can be able to participate in activities to sustain ourselves.

Kungurine spokesperson and Paiam town Lord Mayor Daniel Wakape who himself is a victim of the tribal wars with his entire property burnt down at Paiam, said he will return to his tribal land and agreed to end the fighting.

DCP Yamasombi commended the clan leaders for showing leadership. He said a lot of the times when facilitating mediation there is always a call for law enforcement but they don‘t have all the solutions.

“But the direction you have taken through the leadership of your MP to bring together the clan leaders with the support of the volunteer crisis management team is very effective.

The law will carry out its course but leadership must go ahead for the community to be settled. Peace and normalcy must return. People’s livelihood is important,” DCP Yamasombi said.

He added they will be willing to come back to support the process that’s been established toward achieving peace in Porgera.

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