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Abusing, hitting women not part of our culture: Abel

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Acting Prime Minister Charles Abel has condemned violence against women in Papua New Guinea.
His remarks came during the opening of the Huhu War Canoe Festival at Wagawaga in Milne Bay on Friday.
“My people, as we celebrate our culture here today, I am so proud of the little team and the effort that has gone into making the Huhu War Canoe Festival a success,” he said
Abel congratulated the people of Wagawaga, Maiwara, Ealeba and Huhu for the great display of war canoes, paddling methods, the outstanding setup and the young and village leaders.
“Papua New Guinea is a young country and with the western influences coming in and with the increasing desire for development, material goods and money, we try to reconcile them with our culture, and it is not easy as PNG is still struggling with this transition,” he said.
Abel was saddened by the fact that violence against women, particularly relating to sorcery, was affecting PNG’s culture.
“The violence and the suppression of our women is not part of our culture,” he said.
Abel said using the excuse of sorcery, where men picked on old, vulnerable ladies, like widows, because they have some excuse or problems in their minds, they blame old, defenceless ladies – this is not PNG culture.
“It is only an act of cowardice, where Papua New Guinean men stand around and watch while  other men torture old ladies, widows and young women – not PNG but that is a sick culture,” Abe said.

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