by Bridgette Komatep – EM TV, Port Moresby
Following the recent stand-off between police and the Papua New Guinea Defence Force (PNGDF), the NCD Commission Board has banned the sale of alcohol in the city, which will come into effect this Friday for an indefinite period.
NCD Governor Powes Parkop, in a news conference condemned the recent stand-off between the PNGDF and police. He described the incident as a shameful and regrettable event that has tarnished the city and nation’s image.
Governor Parkop was frustrated at the recent stand-off between police and PNGDF. He said the nation’s capital is a growing city, moving forward to host major international events such as the 2015 Pacific Games and 2018’s APEC Summit and such incidents were uncalled for. While he commended efforts made by the heads of both the police force and Defence Force in bringing peace, he warned of opportunities the disciplined forces may take to injure anyone caught looting.
“The people should be mindful now that the police are authorised to use firearms to restrain people from unnecessary looting,” he said
Governor Parkop said the incident was alcohol-related and not worthy of the current stand-off. In a bid to address the issue, the NCD Commission Board has suspended all liquor trading licenses – this will come into effect this Friday.
“The public, Port Moresby [has until] Friday to stop trading liquor; their licences are suspended. If they want to drink, they will [have to] go to a hotel, tavern, restaurant – drink, then go home,” said Janet Sape, NCD Commission Board member.
Another proposal raised by two NCD Commission Board members, Janet Sape and Kilawin Mere Oala is the relocation of all PNG Defence Force facilities out of the capital city.
To re-emphasise the true meaning of Christmas, a special peace walk has been organised for tomorrow evening. An open invitation has been extended to both factions of the disciplined forces to put aside their grievances and participate in the peace walk. Meanwhile, Governor Parkop has assured international visitors and Pacific islanders that all is well and the city is ready to host the 2015 Pacific Games and other international events.