It’s only a day away from the 5th Melanesian Arts and Culture festival.
While finishing touches to the grounds that are being up scaled, it’s what’s on the other side that has authorities concerned.
Opportunists looking to make spin off business out of the festival are setting up private stalls without proper authorization.
Come Saturday, this will be the place to be, the venue of the 5th Melanesian Arts and Culture Festival. The only thing now that will spoil the festivities would be unfavorable weather conditions.
It’s what was happening opposite the grounds that drew our attention. A number of Port Moresby residents were in a frenzy, staking out their claim for space to set up stalls.
We asked them what was the process they undertook to set stalls up here, whether it was part of the festival. They told us it was just a matter of first come first serve.
One group told us some street boys who took claim to portions of land area, were now selling them.
We later spoke to police that were manning the festival grounds to confirm whether what they were doing was legal. Late this afternoon, they confirmated that it was illegal. All the stalls have to be removed by tomorrow.
As announced yesterday by the leader of government business, James Marape, gave the festival as a reason to adjourn parliament, a reason the Sumkar MP, Kenfairweather didn’t agree with.
Regardless the carvers were out, intricately chopping large tree trunks to add to the finishing touches.
While the proper stalls inside the grounds where prepped up with the help of a bulldozer.
MSG leaders and festival participants from the four Melanesian countries as well as West Papua have arrived in the country.
Satellite venues where other cultural displays will be held include, Rabaul, Milne Bay, Wewak and Mt Hagen.
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