The National, Thursday July 25th, 2013
By PETER ESOP WARI
POLICE say 18 ballot boxes for the Poroma LLG president elections in Nipa-Kutubu district, Southern Highlands were destroyed at the Poroma police station.
There were 23 ballot boxes altogether for the LLG wards. Four boxes were stored in another building and were brought to the Mendi police station with a police escort.
Acting provincial police commander Insp Sibron Papoto said the four remaining boxes were safe at Mendi police station and police were looking for the suspects.
The incident happened after assistant returning officer Kenneth Kelei announced to the public at Poroma station that the counting would take place at the Mendi police station because of security reasons.
This was a direction from election manager David Wakias.
“With the help of Poroma police, the boxes were loaded on a vehicle and when trying to move out, the locals blocked the entrance and demanded to count the boxes at Poroma station,” he said.
He told them it was the order from the election manager and the boxes had to be removed due to security reasons as the place was unsafe.
“We tried explaining to them but the did not listen. We left the boxes in the police station but they broke the door and removed them.”