Deaths confirmed in Enga tribal fight

National, Normal


IT has been confirmed that six people have died in a bloody tribal fight over a land dispute in Kandep district of Enga province.
Enga police operation commander Insp Martin Kelei told The National from Wabag yesterday that six people died last week while the fighting continued.
“There are two different ongoing tribal fights but the report of casualties from the other feud is not yet available to the police in Wabag,” he said.
A source from Wabag said the tribal fight that claimed the six lives were between two small clans within the Lub tribe from Pogermanda and Kiripso villages near Kandep High School.
Insp Kelei said police in the province could not be deployed to the area due to constraints caused by another fight in Sinrunki near Wabag.
“Mobile squad 9 was deployed to Sinunki and we didn’t have enough police manpower and logistics to go to Kandep.
“We have reports from local police on the ground that public services in the district had stopped since the by-election last year.
“Kandep High School is still closed and public services are not operating,” Insp Kelei said.
He said one of the instigators of the tribal fight in Sirunki, Iso Nom, and other accomplices were arrested and charged while Kori Nom, Iso’s brother who is a district court clerk in Wabag, is still on the run.
“Fighting is not really tense as the police are camping at the DPI station to ensure the road is free for travelling and properties are safe,” he said.
Meanwhile, eight suspects were handed over to the police early this week for the killing of a 19-year-old Grade 11 student from Lower Lai in the Wapenemanda district.
Insp Kelei said other suspects were still at large and arrests would be made soon.
The situation in Lower Lai area is still tense.