DURING Friday’s grievance debate, East Sepik Governor Allen Bird defended Sir Michael Somare and lashed out at some MPs who claimed that the province had progressed in terms of development and benefited from Sir Michael’s leadership for a long time.
Those claims are truly an insult to the people of East Sepik.
As a Pikinini Sepik, this also does not go down well with me when I read about it in Monday’s newspaper.
Let me share my thoughts.
Firstly, although we produced a long-serving leader, the actual progress of development in East Sepik has been at a snail’s phase.
Secondly, the people of East Sepik have sacrificed to uphold and keep Sir Michael in politics for a long time. In those years we suffered to serve others first.
To justify those claims, I challenge those MPs to please get on a plane, go down to Wewak and see for yourselves.
Go and prove to yourselves if Sir Michael has developed his Karau village in the Murik lakes. I have visited Karau once. What the Governor said is true.
There is no road linking Karau and Wewak.
There is not even a single permanent house. Important infrastructures like a school, church and aid post were built using bush materials. Even Sir Michael himself does not have a permanent house at his home village. He has a simple village house with no cushioned chairs, no mattresses, etc.
I stepped in and saw it for myself. If he was a selfish person, he would have transformed his backyard, but he did not.
Development progress at his home village truly speaks of his character of putting others first. Current and future leaders should know that this country owe the people of East Sepik a lot.
Choosing a good leader is not an easy thing. East Sepik raised a distinctive and God-chosen leader, a man who had a blend of both Western and Melanesian wisdom.
He is truly a chosen leader and has a heart to serve others first. He continued in that manner until his retirement from active politics.
Please show some respect to the people of East Sepik.
Hanam Bill Sandu