by Vasinatta Yama – EM TV News, Port Moresby
The Civil Society of Port Moresby has described Papua New Guinean democracy as a “guided democracy”.
They said this after police canceled the proposed peaceful protest march today in Port Moresby.
NGO, People’s Power Movement, and the civil society were protesting in order to petition Prime Minister, Peter O’Neill, to step down.
This morning, almost three quarters of NCD’s police force, including NCDC reservists guarded the Unagi Oval in Port Moresby, where the march was set to take place.
Earlier, police gave assurance that they would provide security, however an hour later police began attacking the crowd.
Witnesses said that one particular teenager who was yelling at the police was severely beaten.
A protestor who was filming the commotion was kicked in the face, and his camera destroyed.
After the protest march was cancelled, the civil society said they would regroup in seven days time in order to allow for more awareness about the protest to be raised.
The petition asks for PM O’Neill to step down from office for mismanagement, and surrender to police for interview and arrest.
About 27 petitions were presented to the media.
According to the organisers a court order was given to the Police hierarchy and NCD Metropolitan Superintendent, Benjamin Turi, not to interfere with or to stop the protest.
With today’s action, they said the police have committed contempt of court.