A GROUP of Papua New Guinea Defence Force (PNGDF) soldiers threatened and assaulted airport staff and security in Lae on Monday evening when they were offloaded for being under the influence of alcohol.
The rowdy behaviour of the soldiers at Nadzab terminal scared and forced the Port Moresby bound passengers, including an MP, to run for cover in fear of their lives.
The Cholera Task Force soldiers, in their full military gear were not allowed to board the 7pm flight to Port Moresby because they were apparently intoxicated.
The ArmSec guards manning the manual checkpoint at the terminal had notified them that according to the Government and Civil Aviation Authority regulations, intoxicated passengers are always off-loaded.
The soldiers had followed the normal procedures for firearm clearance, but after learning they were offloaded, the soldiers, led by Major Ivan Timo and Lt Linus Osaba, allegedly started to argue with the guards and Air Niugini check-in staff.
They forced themselves into the Air Niugini terminal office and threatened the port manager Alfred Kewia and got their firearms back.
They swore abusive words and assaulted the guards manning the checkpoint.
ArmSec operations manager Lucas Watur said five of his guards were assaulted.