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Port Moresby
July 16, 2020
Highlands News

First Phase of Government Sanctioned Call-out Operation in Hela Concluded

The K11 million Government-sanctioned Call-out Operation in Hela Province ended its first phase today.

Call-out Contingent Commander Lieutenant John Manuai says the  Joint Forces will now begin the second phase.

The completion of the first phase also signifies the end of the Gun Amnesty period.

Early this year, nearly 300 personnel from the PNG Defence Force and Police were deployed to Hela Province for the Call-out Operation.

Lt John Manuai is happy with the progress as more locals surrender guns, however he says people must surrender all firearms.

Despite funding hiccups from the Chief Secretary’s Office, Joint Forces have kept to their duties to restore law and order in the province.

For the past three days, people in Tari Pori, Nogoli, Tebi, Komo and Wabia have come forward to surrender their firearms.

Recent gun surrenders involved high-powered factory made guns including explosives.

All guns surrendered are recorded by the Joint Forces. A separate operation will involve investigations as to where these guns were bought, including their ammunition.

Those with gun license will also be screened.

Hela Governor, Francis Potape, says following the surrendering of guns, peace agreements must be signed to put a stop to all fights for Hela to move forward.

All firearms, including explosions and other weapons surrendered will be destroyed on Friday.

Meanhwhile, Potape says calls to extend the Call-out Operation will not be possible.

Governor Potape said the Call-out is a Government sanction operation and must be strictly followed.

He made this statement following calls by leaders to give more time to those who have not surrendered their firearms.

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