Border protection vital: Dion

The National,Friday June 17th, 2016

Inter-Government Relations Minister Sir Leo Dion has expressed concern over transnational criminal activities along the country’s land and maritime borders.
Sir Leo urged national border agencies such as the PNG Customs, Immigration, National Agriculture Quarantine Inspection Authority, Department of Provincial Affairs, Foreign Affairs as well as the six border provincial governments to work with the Border Development Authority (BDA) to address  national security, illegal harvesting of marine resources, illegal border crossing and human trafficking.
Papua New Guinea shares a land border with Indonesia and maritime borders with Australia, Solomon Islands, Federal States of Micronesia and Palau.
While swearing in new BDA board members in Port Moresby, Sir Leo said BDA was mandated to coordinate infrastructure, economic and social developments in the border provinces of West Sepik, Western, Manus, New Ireland, Milne Bay and Autonomous Region of Bougainville under the BDA Act 2008.
“The onus is on the administrations of the border provinces to take ownership of their own border programmes and work closely with BDA to facilitate development programmes in their respective provinces.
“Similarly, the core border management agencies must work with BDA to enhance their own mandated functions to improve border security issues,” he said.