By MARJORIE FINKEO
THE National Capital District Commission is closing down trade stores, canteens and liquor outlets operating without licences, or have fake licences, to curb lawlessness which has led to major crimes lately.
Liquor licensing inspectors who visited Moresby North East yesterday discovered that many trade stores and canteens were conducting business without licences, or were using fake licences.
NCDC liquor licencing inspector Tom Kamtai said selling beer without a licence was illegal.
He said a store owner must have the approval of the building board and a licence from the NCDC to run a business.
In addition, the Physical Planning Department must approve the location of the shop, after taking into consideration how the people access services.
Kamtai said notices had been served on the illegal operators to stop trading.
“We give them seven, 14 and 21 days depending on the nature of their business.
“Those who breach the notice will be (dealt with) by the police in a follow-up operation,” he said.
They found three canteens selling beer without a licence, one canteen owner produced a fake licence, one trading store had an invalid licence.
Five liquor outlets closed their doors when they saw police raiding nearby canteens.
Zone Three operation leader Sgt Tom Vali said lawlessness was rife in some settlements because of the many illegal liquor outlets.
A community leader who wish to remain anonymous said the 5-Mile settlement at the back of a hotel was a popular area for petty crimes, marijuana trading, sex-related crimes, carjacking and the holding up of passengers in buses.
“Many time we report these to nearest police station but no action was taken,” he said.
He said the crime and alcohol-related problems were not only confined to 8-Mile, 9-Mile and Erima but also 5-Mile where drunkards fight and noise pollution was a problem every weekend.
Meanwhile, National Capital District Governor Powes Parkop has condemned the two killings in a span of 72 hours at the 9-Mile and Kaugere settlements.
Parkop described them as barbaric and senseless, saying the alleged perpetrators should be punished.
In the first incident, a Gulf man was knifed to death by a man from Hela last Thursday because he did not repay the K100 he had borrowed.
The second incident involved a man from Enga who allegedly killed Biou Pasa from Western with a knife in a dispute over a 20 toea.
“I have called on the Assistant Police Commissioner NCD Anthony Wagambie and Metropolitan Superintendent Perou N’Dranou to ensure that the alleged murderers are arrested and brought to justice as soon as possible,” Parkop said.
“I have further called on them to arrest any person impeding in any way the arrest of these criminals by concealing their locations or seeking to organise compensation or peace settlement over these barbaric killings.”
He said in the recent past, criminals had been allowed to escape prosecution, using peace negotiations and other community initiatives to bring peace as a cover.
Parkop thanked police for swiftly responding to stop more violence and destruction of properties in the areas.
He also thanked them for arresting the Hela man at the Kerema Block on Sunday afternoon following a tip-off.