The National, Wednesday June 26th, 2013
By JACK AMI
THE National Government has acquired sporting grounds and land for the Pacific Games for the benefit of sports in Papua New Guinea.
Sports and Pacific Games Minister Justin Tkatchenko made this announcement at a press conference at in Port Moresby yesterday.
This is to safe guard all the sporting grounds to ensure that they are reserved for sports and recreation.
Tkatchenko said this decision comes at a time when all the sporting grounds need to be protected and secured for future of our sporting generations and not end up in the hands of individuals and groups.
He said the compulsory acquisition of properties initially in Port Moresby, would ensure that all facilities come under the government arm in sports – the PNG Sports Foundation.
“This secures the sporting grounds from being sold off by individuals and groups as they will be registered under one title,”Tkatchenko said.
The PNG Sports Foundation will then sub lease these particular grounds back to the appropriate sporting bodies after the Pacific Games,” Tkatchenko said.
“For too long, sporting facilities and land meant for sports have been stolen and sold to individuals (foreign and national) and this has to stop now.”
The Government’s intention now is to develop these grounds and at the same time ensure quality training and playing fields for our sportsmen and women leading up to and beyond the 2015 Pacific Games.
“We must stop selfish people controlling public property for their own profit and the National Government intervention is an assurance that the country will have these sporting facilities around in the future,” he said.