48-hour ultimatum from people of Madang

The people of Madang have given the Madang Provincial Administration 48 hours to respond to their petition.

Locals from Bel, Ari and Wagi gave their petition to Governor Peter Yama yesterday (April 17).

Spokesperson Kamal Naus said four of their youths were shot dead by police and have demanded the provincial government, through their petition, to look into the matter and respond to the query by tomorrow.

He added that the incident at Bau is now a police matter and investigations are continuing while their cries must be heard through their petition.

“Our stand and instincts are clear and we do not represent or affiliate to any political gimmicks but represent our people in Madang.

“Therefore, we are giving our petition to the father of the house, Governor Peter Yama.”

They are demanding that squatters of all settlements in and around Madang, who are living on state and customary lands, must be evicted forthwith.

They are also demanding the provincial government to meet the cost and compensation of lives of those who died during the stand-off between the locals and police, including a proper burial.

“The provincial government must also provide funding to support immediate families of those who have lost their lives.”

They further demanded that a memorial monument be erected within the provincial headquarters as a sign of respect and memories of the fallen locals.

The landowners are also demanding for the resignation of the Provincial Police Commander and a commission of inquiry must be established to investigate the shooting and killing of the four locals.

Governor Yama accepted their petition and assured the people that his administration will respond within the given timeframe.

The petition was received by the Governor and witnessed by the acting provincial administrator John Bivi, Provincial Police Commander Chief Inspector Ben Neneo, legal counsels and the media.

However, no MPs from the districts were present to receive the petition.

The stand-off by the people and police stemmed from an incident at Bau where a teacher was beheaded two weeks ago.

This resulted in police retaliating and allegedly killing four people from the area.

This has led to opportunists taking advantage of the situation and destroying the water treatment reservoir, resulting in the shutdown of water into Madang town.

(Madang Governor Peter Yama yesterday)

Freddy Mou