First K5m for Hela call-out released

An initial funding of K5 million has been released to cater for the first 30 days of the security call-out operation in Hela Province.

The operation will be launched today (January 9) with 300 security personnel from the PNG Defence Force and Police deployed to the area for three months.

Chief Secretary Isaac Lupari confirmed that the total estimate approved by cabinet is K11 million for 60 days and they will make sure that the funding is available.

Lupari said they are supported by Oil Search to provide logistics, including accommodation, allowances, transport and meals on ground for the security personnel.

The Government is also supported by the Hela Provincial Government to pay for logistics as well, including accommodation.

The operation will be reviewed after 30 days, where it will be decided whether to scale it down or increase security personnel on ground.

Lupari said he is confident that the operation will be a success as many of the personnel and the commanders involved are very experienced.

The security operation aims to restore law and order in Hela by removing all illegal firearms and high-powered weapons used in tribal fights and other law and order issues.

Quintina Naime