Proposed Beai Markets Unsafe, says Beai Growers

Beai sellers fromthe Gulf and Central Province have expressed fears overthe proposal ofthe new buai selling points outside of Port Moresby.


They saidthese areas are not safe for them, particularly women and children who travel to selltheir produce.

Michael Lavaki from Lese inthe Gulf Province is a regular travelling buai seller to Port Moresby.


Like many from his home andthe Kairuku people fromthe Central Province, buai istheir sole income earner.


He saysthe proposed locations ofthe new buai markets outside of Port Moresby, are very risky.


“There are a lot of criminals outthere. We sellers make little from our buai sales, butthe Highlanders,they hold more than a thousand kina each day to buy a 10kg bag of buai. I see thatthere will be a lot of violence and ther criminal acts,” Lavaki said.

Andrew Sapothe interim chairman ofthe Lareva Market saysthe market is by far,the safest inthe city.


He agreed with Michael that movingthe markets outside could be risky; riskier thanthe notorious Gordons Market.


“Lareva market isthe safest buai market inthe city…inthe last three and a half years,there were no criminal activit’s,”said Sapo.

During Governor Parkop’s visit to Aipeana Village in Mekeo last week to receive a proposal, this was highlighted by community lLeaders


Governor Parkop’said allthese have been taken into consideration.


The Mekeo people have describedthe proposal sayingthey were being thrown tothe dogs.


“The places that you’re proposing tight now, you are giving our people tothe dogs and pigs,” said Paul Aisa, a local leader.

“I’m here to listen and accept your petition and consider your proposal inthe petition…and I want assure you all that I will look at it and I will try to work on outcome that can be a win-win for all of us,” Parkop toldthe Mekeo people.

Another issue raised by sellers is for a fixed price regulation for buai bags.


Lavaki says withthe current relocation exercise, he has decreasedthe number of bags he brings in to sell.


“We are not carrying many bags as we used to beforethe ban. At least two or three bags is okay,” he said.

They have called onthe Governor to consider ther alternatives.


Caption: Michael Lavaki, a regular travelling buai seller to Port Moresby’says proposed buai markets are unsafe.

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