Late Grand Chief Sir Michael Somare

Late Grand Chief’s casket leaves funeral home

Lady Veronica, her children and grandchildren arrived a few minutes ago.

Governor General Sir Bob Dadae, Prime Minister James Marape, former Governor Generals and dignitaries are already seated and waiting to receive the casket.

The funeral service is scheduled to start at 2pm.

Thousands of Port Moresby residents have packed the Sir Hubert Murray stadium to witness the funeral service of the founding father of the nation.

Residents turned up in black to bid farewell to our national leader who led the country into independence.

Grand chief’s schoolmates share story

Morobe’s heavyweights; Sir Jerry Nalau, Anong Ahi, Mactuawe Gware-Stafford and Labo Nalau studied at the Dregerhafen Education Centre with Sir Michael.

They showed up to pay their respects in the final part of the residents’ two-day haus sore.

Guided by their relatives, they slowly but steadily made their way to the centre of the arena, where the late Grand Chief’s portrait was.

LIVE: Special Parliament sitting for Late Grand Chief Sir Michael Somare

UPNG SHP students show grief

The large group of students attended the Late Grand Chief Sir Michael Somare’s memorial at the Sir John Guise Indoor Complex on Tuesday.

The UPNG Southern Highlands Students Association is made up of five sub-associations representing the five districts of Ialibu-Pangia, Imbonggu, Kagua-Erave, Mendi-Munihu and Nipa-Kutubu.

Students cancelled their lectures and arranged themselves under the leadership of the executives to attend the haus sore.

President of the Association, Tom Berepu, said they see the Late Grand Chief as an institution. 

Lae residents unite for 'haus sore'

Frustrated with the Morobe Provincial Government’s delayed response to the passing of the late Grand Chief Sir Michael Somare, city residents are pushing to host a memorial at the Raun Wara.

Around 68 representatives from various organisations and wards attended the first meeting on March 4th at the Lae Bowls Club, where a nine-member committee was appointed.

Toroama pays tribute

An emotional President Toroama said this when paying his respects at Sir Michael’s haus krai. 

President Toroama led the Bougainville community to represent the Autonomous Region of Bougainville.

Toroama honoured Sir Michael as the nation’s founding father.

“You are truly the seed of this nation. A seed that stood and embraced democracy for this nation. A seed that truly believed that peace and freedom is what this nation should achieve. I salute you, on behalf of my people, I salute you with great honour and respect. May your soul rest in peace,” said Toroama. 

Youths set up ‘haus sore’

Located at Speedway – New block, the haus sore was set up on Tuesday where residents gathered to remember and celebrate the life of the founding father.

Children and youth rubbed mud all over their faces to show their grief.

Spokesperson of the community, Isaiah Jawa, said: “Ol pikinini ol rabim graun na ol stap ya, ol i harim stori lo ol parents blo ol na seniors blo ol, olsem Somare em disla man husat bringim indipendens. Indipendens min olsem mipla self-governed that mipla ken mekim samting insait lo democracy.

Motukoita open hauskrai

The people of MotuKoita were the first to visit with members of the Somare family. 

The Haus Krai will run for the next two weeks.

Provincial groups have been scheduled to come and spend time with the Somare family and grieve with them during this time of mourning. 

Like any haus krai, the event started off with fellowship and beautiful Motu singing.

The Haus Krai is being co-hosted by the National Capital District Commission.

Australia extends sympathies

In a statement, Prime Minister Scott Morrison said Sir Michael was a towering figure in the history of Papua New Guinea.

“As a driving force in the development of Papua New Guinea’s national constitution, and the nation’s first and longest-serving Prime Minister, Sir Michael has an unparalleled place in the history of Papua New Guinea,” he stated.

“As Prime Minister for 17 years, over four separate terms, Sir Michael became a long-standing and respected friend of Australia, working alongside Australian Prime Ministers Whitlam, Fraser, Hawke, Howard, Rudd and Gillard.

Public servants urged to observe mourning period

This is in respect of the passing of the founding father and the first Prime Minister, Grand Chief Sir Michael Somare.

The founding father passed away at Pacific International Hospital in the early hours of Friday 26th of February.

Department of Personnel Management Secretary, Taies Sansan, in a circular issued to all heads of departments, heads of line agencies, provincial administrators and all public servants, announced NEC has endorsed two weeks of mourning and two days of public holiday which fall on;