Chinese community restores cemetery

National, Normal

The National, Friday November 1st, 2013

 THE Chinese community, through the Chinese Cathay Club in Port Moresby, has committed more than K100,000 to restore the Rabaul Asiatic Cemetery that has been buried under thick ash since the twin volcanic eruptions in 1994.

The Rabaul Urban local level government will manage the project and look after the cemetery.

Project coordinator Michael Chan said the cemetery was the home of the first immigrants from China, particularly those from the Taishan, Guadong province, who entered Papua New Guinea under the German colonial administration.

Chan said it was the home of those Chinese who perished during World War II from 1937-47.

He said soldiers from Taiwan, under the Japanese military, were buried there alongside many mixed-race Chinese.

He said the cemetery was well kept by the Chinese community that at times gave money to the Rabaul town council to maintain it until the twin eruptions in 1994.

“Tavurvur volcano deposited most of her ash in the direction of the cemetery,” Chan said.

He said 12 years ago, Chinese communities in Sydney and Brisbane contributed around K56,000 to dig up the ash at the cemetery.