Morobe Governor, Kelly Naru, saysthe interests of Morobeatns will be protected under a government policy that will ensure that two thirds of space allotments in Lae Market will be occuplied by Morobeatns.
Naru said this is to ensure thatthere is a level playing field for everyone who comes to selltheir produce.
The Lae market is likethe city itself, very much divided. There are clear unwritten rules as to who sits where.
The Morobeatns who come with crops like Taro and Benanas are clustered inthe un-shaded part ofthe market; and in anther part are sellers from various parts ofthe highlands.
On Wednesdaythe women presented a petition tothe Morobe Governor calling for better services and equal participation. They’ve also called for better sanitation and facilities.
“If it means that I have to practice discriminatory policy to favorthe Morobeatnsthen I have to do it,” says Naru.
The governor has made no apologies for his statements. He agrees it’s discriminatory but meant to protect Morobeatns and allow for fair trade inthe province.
“We don’t go to ther regions and dominatetheir markets, dominatetheiPMV industry, or dominatetheir businesses sothe same should apply here in Morobe,” says Naru.
The Naru administration has also began cracking down on land sales. It’s anther area where Morobeatns are losing out. He wants to stop people from owning more than one land portion in Lae city.
Scott Waide, National EMTV News