Police warn youths to stop illegal roadblocks

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By TONY PALME
POLICE have warned youth stopping or collecting money from vehicles along the Banz-Kindeng-Dei road in Jiwaka and Western Highlands that they would face the full force of the law if caught.
Traffic from Lae and Goroka has been diverted from Kudjip junction into Banz and onwards to the back road to Dei and Mt Hagen.
From Mt Hagen and the western part of the Highlands, traffic has also been diverted along the back road.
The section of the highway between Panjin and Aviamp was blocked off permanently early yesterday.
Relatives of the late police constable Glen Jimmy Golang who was killed along with a colleague from Chuave, Chimbu during election operations in Wabag, have put up massive roadblocks for the second time.
They are frustrated over the long delay by the Government, the Enga provincial government, the Electoral Commission, the police commissioner, Kandep MP Alfred Manasseh and former MP Don Polye in responding to their petitions.
It is almost two months since the death of the police constables and their bodies are still at the funeral home in Goroka.
The late Golang’s Menjipi tribe said the roadblock would be permanent.
Attempts to get comments from Jiwaka police commander Supt Joseph Tondop and Eastern Division Command ACP Nema Mondiai were unsuccessful.
Banz station commander Tom Nickodemus told The National that they had caught seven youths, three who had set up roadblocks at Bunum Wo bridge and four from the Kondopina Waghi bridge who put up illegal roadblocks and collected money from drivers.
The youths have been remanded at Banz police station and are being questioned.
Nickodemus confirmed that they removed nine roadblocks at Warakar, Bunum Wo, Kondopina and Kindeng yesterday during routine checks.
Nickodemus condemned the actions of the youths, especially drug addicts.
Prominent Jiwaka chief Philip Kapal. who lives along the road at Karkopi, also condemned the actions of the youths.
“It’s a shame for us Jiwakans, police traffic officers must shoot these lunatics who block the road,” Kapal said.

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