We want next generation to be secure, says UPNG SRC president

We are boycotting classes because we want the next generation to be secure, says the University of Papua New Guinea’s student representative council (SRC) president.

Kenneth Rapa said this today during what was supposed to be the handover of their petition to Prime Minister Peter O’Neill.

The petition asks O’Neill to step aside and be investigated. Unfortunately, the PM sent Minister of Higher Education, Research, Science and Technology Malakai Tabar to get the document, to which the students refused to give to him.

“The office of the prime minister or police commissioner, or any office on that matter, is eternal,” Rapa said in front of more than 5000 students at the UPNG Forum Square.

“The office holders are temporary. You are here today, you will be gone tomorrow.

“We’re humbly asking now if you, the office holders, can leave a legacy, a precedent that the next generation will follow.”

The University of Technology’s SRC president David Kelma was also present at the event with three of his colleagues.

“The 3032 students of Unitech are with this group,” Kelma told UPNG.

Unitech is also into its third day of boycotting classes.

Also present at the event was Petroleum Minister Ben Micah, Finance Minister James Marape, Works and Implementation Minister Francis Awesa, chief secretary Isaac Lupari and OHE director general Professor David Kavanamur, along with UPNG’s administration.


(UPNG SRC members with their president Kenneth Rapa, third left, with Petroleum Minister Ben Micah, right, and UPNG vice-chancellor professor Albert Mellam, second right.)

Carmella Gware