Compensation paid to restore peace

Highlands

MORE than K200,000 and a total of 217 animals including pigs, cows and horses were paid as compensation over the death of a young man in the Western Highlands.
The compensation was paid to the Yano tribe of Tambul by the Upula Takapoka and the Kusika Kenglga tribes, also from Tambul.
The death was related to last year’s general election.
In July last year, a commotion between the supporters of candidate James Kennedy and former MP Benjamin Poponawa turned into a fight, resulting in the death of the young man from Yano.
The deceased was believed to have been a supporter of Poponawa and he was killed at Tambul station.
Kennedy’s supporters were in a convoy to launch his posterat Gia when the incident took place.
A year later and Kennedy led his people down the road to peace and paid compensation – at two separate venues, at Palnol village on Monday and Kalapolo village on Saturday.
Kennedy apologised to the immediate family members of the diseased and the Yano tribesmen for the loss and described it as unexpected.
He described the diseased as his brother and he was surprised to be informed of his death.
“I do not know how the incident happened. My intention of contesting the election was not to create violence and instability among the tribes,” Kennedy said.
“I contested to represent the people of Tambul-Nebilyer and I am so sorry for the loss.”
He said the compensation was meant to be done separately so that peace could be restored to all parties involved.
“I thanked the Kusika Kenglga and my tribe for paying the compensation because we were blamed for the death,” Kennedy said.
“We have struggled to find justice but at the end, pigs and money are the only means to restore peace in our Melanesian way.”
Yano tribe spokesman Pus Pora thanked all the parties involved in the peace process.
He said Kennedy was among the many candidates who had exercised their democratic right to contest the general election but it was the supporters who caused the problem.
“We accept the compensation and want peace and normalcy to be resorted between our people,” he said.

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