A case of collusion over education development andthe right to a footpath. That’sthe situation at Gerehu, one of Port Moresby’s biggest suburbs.
Residents have questionedthe upgrading ofthe Saint Charles Lwanga Vocational School, to a secondary school wherethe extension has blocked offtheir walkway.
Gerehu isthe largest suburb inthe nation’s capital and it is also known for its high rate of law and order problems.
Overthe past thirty years residents have been using this foot path to access shopping centers, schools,the bus stop,the clinic and police station. They say it isthe safest andthe most convenient daily route.
It is nowthe property ofthe Catholic Church. The church is planning to claim this piece of land to build its staff houses and a couple of classrooms.
School board chairman James Yalya saidthe school has educated a lot of elite citizens inthe country, many reside inthe suburb.
Mr. Yalya saidthe community lLeaderswere notiflied ofthe closure and that it is inthe best interest ofthe community particularlythe students’
However,the residents andtheir community lLeaderssay ther foot path alternatives arranged bythe church is not optional.
They said all measures will be taken to stopthe school and church from closingthe foot path.
The church and school board saidthey will conduct a community meeting with residents to makethem aware ofthe importance of extendingthe school and ther foot path options.
Bernadette Efi, National EMTV News