Western Province

West Papuans call for help

The group includes men, women and children.

The West Papuans, from Boven Digoel village, are currently in North Fly District.

Pictures of the West Papuans who crossed over were shared with this newsroom by a reliable source on ground.

Michael Pius said the people began crossing the border in November.

Pius, who is from a mixed parentage of Western Province and West Papua, said their safety in West Papua was not guaranteed because state security cannot protect them.

He said they felt their lives were in danger and so fled across the border.

Locals report fuel shortage in Kiunga

Locals in Kiunga have confirmed that two fuel stations at Pajawi and Kiunga have run out since the beginning of this month.

Aron Bale, who is a resident of Western Province, attributed the situation to the continuous dry spell that has caused the Fly River stage to decrease, preventing cargo ships from anchoring at the port.

“No more PMV services are provided because there’s no fuel and it’s really hot in Kiunga Town area and surrounding villages,” he said.

The prices of store goods and bus fares have also tripled, forcing locals to spend more.

Police confirm killing of two Chinese men

Provincial Police Commander for North Fly command, Silva Sika, said the victims had been operating shops in the Lake Murray area for some months when they were killed.

The reason behind the killings is yet to be established.

PPC Sika said the three suspects, believed to be from Hela Province, were captured and are now in police custody.

Fourteen police personnel, including CID from the North Fly district, assisted police in Middle Fly to apprehend the suspects.

The suspects are now at the Daru police station lock up, awaiting court mention.

Police upgrade investigative skills

Tabubil-based Senior Detective Constable Ruso Hate said the ‘Strengthening family sexual violence investigations and prosecution workshop’ had given him the knowledge to lay appropriate charges for different types of sexual offences, including rape, sexual assault and sexual penetration.

Detective Hate, who works in Tabubil’s Criminal Investigation Division, said it was frustrating and concerning to see charges against alleged sexual offenders thrown out of court because of technical errors in the charging process.

Retired nurse returns to help TB emergency response

With over 40 years of nursing experience and a heart-warming smile, Sr Ase has become a familiar face across Daru Island, Western Province, working with communities on the frontline of the emergency response to tuberculosis (TB).

As the Emergency TB Response Nursing Officer at Daru General Hospital, Sr Ase’s role is to visit households where people have been newly diagnosed with TB and investigate if other family members are also showing signs and symptoms.

Western should be split: Governor

The province’s huge landmass has been identified, among others, as a main obstacle to reaching the sparsely isolated communities in terms of service delivery.

Western Governor Taboi Awi Yoto believes that splitting the province would reduce many legacy issues concerning development in the province.

He said it will also allow adequate representation of people from this region in Parliament by creating several more open electorates, especially Nomad and Lake Murray areas.

Rumginae primary gets new classroom

The additional infrastructure will go a long way in accommodating the needs of the school as it notes the expansion in student enrolment.

Rumginae Primary School was established in 1962 and has served Western Province well.

However, like many rural institutions, the school has infrastructural challenges.

The opening of the additional classroom opens the door to more opportunities and improved learning for the students.

“It is a new era you have set for Rumginae Primary School and Western Province,” said Head Teacher Awa Getame.

Local queries use of PNGSDP funds

A frustrated Deputy Head Teacher of Rumginae Primary School said the province hosts the Ok Tedi Mine however, there is nothing to show for it on ground.

The deputy head teacher aired his grievances on the unfair distribution of wealth and benefits received by PNG Sustainable Development Program through the Ok Tedi Mine. 

He pointed out that although the province prides itself in hosting the Ok Tedi Mine, the health and education facilities are still sub-standard.

Road works begin across border

The launching was held at Alicpit Birimkamba waterfront in Ningerum local level government area.

North Fly MP James Donald, while addressing his people, said this road project would encourage economic activity and trade across the border regions as well as Western Province as a whole.

“We cannot continue to conduct business with Port Moresby because it’s too far and expensive. Let’s make our life easier by simply putting a road across,” Donald stated.

Western Province leaders hailed for working together

Musje Werror, who’s originally from West Papua but calls Madang his second home province, has been working with OTML for 30 years in Western Province.

He was invited among other guests by North Fly MP James Donald to launch Alicepit-Ambaga-Yetetkun road that will run from the West Bank of Alice River to Indonesia.

Werror described the unity and willingness demonstrated so far by Western leaders as ‘first time in 30 years’.