Be Ruth Rungula
Southern Highlands Provincial Police Commander ChiefInspector Sibron Papoto reported a rise in extortion related activities in parts of Southern Highlands Province.
This is a crime underthe Criminal Code and he has called onthe people to refrain from carrying out such illegal activities.
Activities include holding up company vehicles alongthe Kiburu to Nipa section ofthe highway for trivial reasons such asthe termination of employment or for providing security vehicles whichbreakown.
Whentheir demands for compensation are not met,they resort to holding up vehicles and demand hefty fees.
Mendi Police have successfully recovered eight vehicles since Novermber last year and are working to recover two more vehicles held inthe Poroma LLG ofthe Nipa Kutubu electorate.
Papoto says companies most affected were sub-contractors of boththe LNG project and Oil Search Limited.
He saysthere is an MOA in place for Mobile Squad units to provide security alongthe highway and those units should be at work.
He is concerned that his manpower has been stretched.