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June 15, 2021

Pila-kapio: PNG Needs an Urgent Human Rights Commissioner

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By Theckla Gunga – EM TV, Port Moresby

A human rights advocate says there is an urgent need for Papua New Guinea to establish a national human rights commission in PNG.

Matilda Pila-kapio’s comments come following the police shootings at Hanuabada Village last month.

She said a human rights commission is long-delayed and should be created during PNG’s 40th Independence anniversary. Matilda Pila-kapio comes from Milne Bay Province.

She has been a human rights advocate for over 30 years.

Matilda has closely been following the aftermath of the Hanuabada killings and says the state has violated human rights. 

She said once a human rights commission is established, it would be of international standard and will help in investigating human rights violations.

Matilda stressed that the right to life is protected under Section 35 of the Constitution and even the police are not supposed to violate that law.

She said Article three of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights states that every human being has the right to life, liberty and security.

Following the killings at Haunabada and other betel nut-related killings, Matilda is now challenging the National Capital District Governor, Powes Parkop and the betel nut ban enforcers to look into reviewing the laws and regulations surrounding the ban.

She described the killings as unnecessary and said NCDC needs to come up with proper initiatives that will best suit Motu Koitabuans and Port Moresby residents.


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