By JAMES APA GUMUNO
KUNABAU leaders in Chimbu’s Kerowagi district have told police to “shoot to kill” any of their people blocking the Highlands Highway between Mingende and Koronigle.
During a meeting with provincial police commander Supt Joseph Tondop last Thursday at Duglogambal, the village elders said youths in the area no longer listen to them and continue to harrass, rob passengers and other road users and loot freight trucks and tankers.
The leaders said their youths’ involvement in criminal activities along the highway had given them a very bad name and image.
National Court interpreter Paul Livingstone told Tondop that the village elders had had enough and wanted police to shoot to kill any youths from the area engaging in criminal activities along the highway.
The villagers had made known their stance after a truck owned by a Chimbu businessman and owner of Kongo Coffee, Jerry Kappka, was looted last Tuesday allegedly by youths from the area at Teine Creek.
Reports alleged that about 14 youths from Bamanekane, Kumankaiye, Kamakane, Golkane, Gegeku, Galku and Konduku clans blocked the road and stole bags of stock feed.
Kerowagi police arrived at the scene and disturbed the looters, however, 60 bags remained missing.
Also present at last Thursday’s meeting were Simbu Warriors executive director Aglua Peter and Kunabau leader Otto Vitus.
They had demanded that the culprits pay a K10,000 compensation by Friday.
Besides sponsoring the Warriors franchise in this year’s rugby league bemobile cup competition, spending K300,000, Kappka had also been a staunch supporter and financier of the Simbu Children’s Fund, a charity organisation involved in assisting sick children and health facilities in the province.