NCD Christmas night programs to continue

Despite negative criticisms regarding the nation’s capital’s Christmas lights program, NCD Governor Powes Parkop says celebrations will go ahead.

The backlash follows experience from previous years where opportunists made the area unsafe for residents during such events.

Parkop, when questioned about residents’ safety, gave his assurance that authorities are doing more than enough to make such night events as safe as possible.

He said no mayor or governor of any city can guarantee absolute safety for their people; authorities can only give assurance that they will do their best by putting security mechanisms in place.

“Bad people are always taking advantage of opportunities and that is something we have to be aware of and expect to cater for.”

He said for this festive period, authorities will be undertaking two measures.

The first is to keep the program short for the night events.

“Instead of 16 to 20 days, we will be cutting it 10 to 12 days.”

The second measure is to extend the celebration out to other communities as well, apart from the Five-Mile area.

This is so that people can go to other parts of the city and participate.

Parkop said a possible location would be at Ela Beach however, with its current state, the lights are going up at the Paga Hill ring road.

There will be another one up at Nine-Mile, while the same goes for Gerehu, Hohola and Jack Pidik.

Parkop said he is aware that there have been incidents of people getting mugged or carjacked in the past and he sympathised with those who had suffered, adding that people should not still give in to these minority groups.

He believes stopping the program will mean that we are giving in to those opportunists.

“Christmas is a time for us to come together as a family and we will continue to promote that,” said the governor.

(Loop file pic)

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Annette Kora