The National, Friday 03rd Febuary 2012
By ABIGAIL APINA
THE chairman of a landowner association has called on the two anonymous elders who claimed in the media recently there were “conmen” luring people in East New Britain into making them chiefs and landowners in the Kandas area of New Ireland to meet with chiefs.
A frustrated Graham Matep, one of the nine chairmen of Topaio Landowner Association, challenged the two elders not to remain anonymous.
Matep said the association was endorsed by the 22 chiefs of the 22 clans operating under the Kandas area.
“Those two elders who came out in the media recently should hold a round table discussion with the 22 chiefs,” he said.
He claimed there were unsettled clan issues and it was not appropriate for them to come out in the media to attack the association.
Matep said the association was not collecting money from the people but there was a K7 fee endorsed on their census list and their bio database.
“That is normal for every association where members register with money, in our case it’s K7,” he said.
He said the two elders failed to say how much had been collected from individuals in the Gazelle Peninsula district.
“There is no evidence to verify their claims.”
Matep said their concerns raised in the media last week were politically influenced.
“Come sit with us and let us talk,” he said.