Foreign yacht intercepted in Manus waters

On March 28th, a foreign yacht was intercepted near Lorengau by the Manus Police sea surveillance team on COVID-19 Response Operations.

Police confirmed that there was an Australian couple on board who had travelled from Australia to Indonesia and into PNG waters. They were on their way to Rabaul, East New Britain Province.

Manus Provincial Police Commander, Chief Inspector David Yapu, said the couple was warned of the state of emergency lockdown and was refused entry into Manus.

He advised them to continue their journey to their destination in Rabaul.

PPC Yapu then contacted his colleague PPCs in New Ireland and East New Britain to be on alert and monitor the movement of the yacht until it reaches its destination for Customs and health authorities to quarantine them for 14 days until cleared.

Yapu said they had other boats transporting bags of betelnut and other illegal items like drugs and firearms, from provinces like East Sepik, Madang and New Ireland into Lorengau town during the SOE.

Manus police have confiscated these bags of betelnut and destroyed them. Suspects have been locked up in Police cells.

PPC Yapu thanked Governor Charlie Benjamin, Open member and Speaker Job Pomat, Provincial Administrator Oka Nungu and Town Mayor for the support given to them in the operations.

“As one of our measures, we are monitoring the movement of people across provincial borders to stop the spread of COVID-19 pandemic.”

Press release