Statistics gathered by a Madang based NGO shows Domestic Violence and Sexual assault cases have increased in the last ten years.
The number of family sexual violence is expected to grow with the coming economic boom, whilst Madang Police are working to curb the problem.
Madang Governor, Jim Kas says the Provincial government is struggling to handle the range of social problems.
The Madang Province has seen an influx of the number of people moving into its major town.
By the end of last year, Madang town’s population had reached numbers close to that of Lae City, and Mt. Hagen.
The drive has been attributed to the recent economic boom in mining and fisheries in the province.
Mary Kaman, the Team Leader from the Madang Provincial Women’s Council, has been working as a Gender based violence advocate for over ten years.
Working in this small building within Madang town, Mary says, she sees about 200 cases of family sexual violence per month.
According to her records of reported cases, the first six-month statistics is over two thousand, and is growing. But, it has been a struggle to prosecute offenders.
Chief Superintendent, Sylvester Kalaut, the Madang Provincial Police Commander, says the Madang Police have opened a new family Sexual violence office to combat the problem.
The office comes after mounting pressure from church groups, NGO’s and advocates to prosecute offenders, who are husbands, uncles and brothers who rape woman in their kin.
But whilst the police scramble to contain Sexual Violence, other social issues have also escalated.
With the prospects of a new highway linking three provinces of the highlands to Madang, and the influx of people coming into the province to take part in the economic boom, the concern is, social problems will rise, and for those who are working to contain the issue, it has already begun to increase.
The red tapes of recent economic booms are fuelled by foreign investments that promise jobs for Papua New Guineans in urban areas.
People migrate into major towns seeking job opportunities in unsustainable mining and fisheries industries, social disorder increases when jobs become scarce, and costs of living rise.
Teenage Prostitution, extra marital affairs, domestic violence, rape and divorces have increased, and are expected to grow. Authorities clamber to contain these problems.
Madang Governor, Jim Kas says the provincial government has contingencies set to deal with the problem. But he admits that the Province isn’t ready to deal with multiple social disorders.
The problem that comes with economic development will cause far more damage to a society, the price for rapid development in an open market.
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