Massive arms surrender in Hela

A total of 70 weapons were surrendered to the security forces last Wednesday in Komo, Hela Province.

The weapons included sixty homemade and ten factory made guns that were brought over as the amnesty period nears its deadline.

Two key warring tribal groups, from the Maia tribe in Emberali ward, took the lead and handed over their weapons in what was termed a ‘breakthrough for peace’ in the province.

Hela Governor Francis Potape, who was present with his provincial assembly members, said he will pursue the matter to ensure that a permanent police barracks is stationed at Komo to look after its gas area.

Joint Task Force Security commanders, Chief Superintendent Samson Kua and Lieutenant Colonel John Manuai, warned that the security forces have the names of those that are in possession of firearms.

They advised the people that now is the time to freely surrender their high-powered weapons. Once the grace period is over, police and defence personnel will arrest those who are illegally in possession of firearms.

Governor Potape warned that if caught with unlicensed firearm, they will be charged and sent straight to prison, where the minimum penalty is 10 years.

(Tribes handing over their guns and weapons in Komo despite the wet weather)

Press release