Stop tribal fights, embrace coffee: Ipatas

Governor Sir Peter Ipatas has urged his people to stop tribal fighting and embrace coffee improvement work in Enga Province to sustain their livelihood.

“We must embrace this gesture in the form of coffee funding rehabilitation and stop tribal fights so more or similar assistance can come into the province.”

Sir Peter also urged his people to work together, invest their time in income generating ventures and more young people to take on initiatives such as this coffee project.

The governor was officiating at the launching of a tool and material distribution ceremony held at Winikos Village in Kompiam District on Wednesday, 21 February. It was attended by over 2,000 people.

He also reiterated collaboration between the project and agriculture officers from the province and district level.

The coffee tools were distributed by private sector firm, Niugini Sustainable Energy Solutions Ltd, a lead partner of Coffee Industry Corporation’s Productive Partnerships in Agriculture Project (CIC-PPAP), undertaking industry rehabilitation in the district.

The Governor thanked funders World Bank, IFAD and PNG Government for funding the project with K1.37 million on tranche basis.

He also acknowledged the PPAP coffee project manager, Potaisa Hombunaka, and staff for supporting his people through this coffee development initiative.

The governor was delighted to see two young Engans in Dick Nemabi and Peter Yakos who have successfully taken on this project as lead partners, as they are both products of his education reform which he started 20 years ago.

The lead partner is serving 1,170 farmers covering 409 hectares in Kompiam district to rehabilitate their gardens.

Tools and materials distributed to the farmers were spades, knives, files, bow sows, bow saw blades, secateurs or scissors for pruning, canvas for parchment drying and coffee hand pulpers.

The items are provided at a subsidised cost (5 percent of total cost) as an intervention in industry rehabilitation program to help farmers increase production of quality coffee.

Bernard Pilon, component 2 coordinator for Western Zone, attended the ceremony on behalf of CIC-PPAP.

He urged the farmers to sustain themselves with income from coffee sales and other income earning options.

He emphasised the need for farmers to embrace change with the challenge to improve their way of living; “Rausim haus kunai na putim haus kapa.” (Replace the traditional thatched houses with permanent homes.)

He further added that financial literacy and saving of income earned are important activities for the farmer so dreams can become reality.

The gathering was witnessed by Enga provincial officials including provincial directors of Education, Law and Order, Finance, and PPAP Board or Industry Coordination Committee member and Director of Agriculture.

Project Manager Potaisa Hombunaka said marketing infrastructure inclusive of roads is critical for coffee development work.

“We hope the presence of the governor as this important gathering will lead into productive partnership with provincial government and district development authorities to plan for and fund road access for farmers and also the populace at large to easily access socioeconomic services.”

Press release