East Sepik Governor Allan Bird said in Parliament yesterday that many cases posted on social media recently relate to violence against women where husbands kill wives; and boyfriends kill girlfriends without any actions taken by relevant agencies to punish those involved.
“People blo yumi, they must be able to operate freely without violence and intimidation from others. Na disla wok lo stat (to reach) ol epidemic proportions now. Pretty soon we’ll be dealing with violence like we are trying to deal with polyp.”
Governor Bird proposed that a bi-partisan committee be formed to look into this matter.
“Police are not dealing with it. The old issue where meri i laik traim long (to seek) protection blo system long ol lain i givim bagarap long ol. Can the Prime Minister do an undertaking to put a bipartisan committee together to deal with this? Because those women are having difficulty accessing services from the state. Can we quickly move to arrest perpetrators in the first instance?”
When responding, Prime Minister James Marape appealed to men to respect women, more so for the police force to address the matters according to laws that are already in place.
“Said blo lo stap pinis. Planti polisman na polismeri across the country work under trying circumstances but yumi apil long ol and beg their concerns to ensure that they deploy or discharge their duty faithfully and diligently without asking for much resources,” said Prime Minister Marape.
He also said part of the issue is to change the mindset of everyone dealing with violence.
“Culture has so much influence on policing, for example, compensation taking precedence over the rule of law in policing. Enough of compensation and take the matter to court. We can’t hide behind culture and custom.
“Maybe we should outlaw compensation completely, in matters relating to violence,” the Prime Minister suggested.