Border panel meeting ongoing in Kokopo

National, Normal

The National, Thursday April 14th, 2016

 A JOINT border committee meeting between PNG, Solomon Islands and Bougainville is being held in Kokopo, East New Britain.

Bougainville Assistant Police Commissioner Francis Tokura said it was to review a memorandum  of understanding signed some years ago.

Tokura said one of the important issues was the progress of a border post between Solomon Islands and Bougainville.

Representatives from the National Border Authority, Customs, Foreign Affairs and Immigration and Police are attending the meeting.

Tokura said the meeting was crucial especially asBougainville waspreparing for theproposed referendum. “The representatives are key people that must be set up for full operation towards the proposedreferendum, “he said.

Tokura said currently, it was only the police in Buin, South Bougainville who were monitoring the movements and activities of the people between the two countries.

“We already have officials from Customs, National Border Authority, Foreign Affairs and Immigration, who are in Bougainville but their full operation is something we really want to set up,” he said.

He said when the authorities were set up, they could assist the Buin police who had been on the ground ever since.

“There are instances where we may have human trafficking, gun smuggling andso on taking placebut this can only be monitored when there is a full border post set up.”