Police ushered in this New Year with its annual New Year operation, this one being a lot more successful than previous years.
Various Liquor trading outlets and street vendors that were operating after 10pm, were forced to shut down as the police urged citizens to remain indoors and celebrate the New Year.
“In my opinion, I see the operation as a success because there is a less number of people on the street, and a less number of complaints received from people fighting as well,” Chief Inspector Toby Hamago said.
Port Moresby was divided into zones headed by a commanding Officer.
Chief Inspector Hamago commanded zone 2 which covered Waigani, Gerehu, Tokarara, Morata, June Valley, and a few other areas.
The Chief Inspector said that this year, they decided to change how they would operate.
“We were stationed in Gerehu stage 6, an area known for burning tires and setting up roadblocks by debris from vehicles. They have been doing this for years”, he said.
“So we decided to change the way we operated by being stationed and patrol that area”, he added.
The operations saw roadblocks in parts of Waigani, Gerehu, Bens Peak, and the raid of various Liquor Trading stores operating after 12am.
Vehicles were checked for alcohol, and civilians walking around the streets after 10pm, were told to go home.
Chief Inspector Hamago added that they made a months’ worth of awareness on Alcohol usage, leading up to the New Year, resulting in people being more cautious.
“We’ve done about a month’s coverage on awareness throughout the suburbs to most settlements. We’ve been doing Truck patrols on Friday nights, and awareness’s at markets and bustops,” he said.
“We have been talking to people to be cautious of how they uses alcohol, going around the night especially in this festive period”, the Chief Inspector explained.
He said they have seen a change and difference between the last couple of years, and this year.
The Police operations ensured the New Year was welcomed safely and celebrated peacefully by citizens all around Port Moresby.
Benjamin Manimbi, EMTV News Cadet, Port Moresby