The National, Thursday 25th April 2013
MANY citizens are outraged at the recent rapes and killing of foreigners on PNG soil. They are aware that such crimes have also been committed where helpless local men, women and children fall victims. They are saying that it is high time that action be taken to stop these criminal acts.
Members of the Sharp Talk group on the social network Facebook have been posting their views and suggestions and are appealing to citizens to rise up with them to stop these crimes and bring the perpetrators to justice. A few have also offered their apologies to the victims and families of the victims of those heinous crimes.
Here are some of their views:
Esther Igo: Men who want to Rise up against Violence against Women, please let us all come together and work together for a better PNG. Women want the top men and women in the country to apologise. They have been quick to apologise to other citizens but not to their own households. Are the lives of Papua New Guinean women and girls so insignificant? The government should state its stand and what it will do about such crimes.
David Roberts: I appeal to fellow Papua New Guineans, especially males from all across our diverse nation, and despite our status/class or professionalism, we need to take the lead in addressing the escalating violence and related issues confronting women and girls within our society.
Karabuspalau Kaiku: When men start taking ownership of this developmental problem, they will see progressive results. This apologising and verbal rhetoric as a result of the recent spate of violent acts is just shallow and superficial. Women and men it’s time to arise.
John Gitiri: We need to come together, men and women, to address the issue before us. I am for a nation-wide or city-wide stop work now. Can we form a committee to organise this? Just waiting and talking is not going to change anything.
Reginald Renagi: I personally feel so ashamed that with so many words over the years, since our so-called Independence in 1975, no government leader under successive administrations has ever publicly condemned the raping, and killing of our women at the hands of their own countrymen. But I may be the first to say we are sorry as a nation. Since last Friday, no member of our parliament has publicly come out to severely condemn this vile and brutal act towards the Americans and their local guides, and sincerely apologised to them. So I want to say it on behalf of all PNG men (and citizens) and apologise to the two, and to all our PNG women who have been brutally violated, raped and killed over the years. My heart really breaks, bleeds and cries for them too. I call on my government, parliament and all PNG men here (and offline) to stop all violence against women in PNG now.
Terence Tuohik: This anger has driven me mad since Sunday. On Monday morning, as a teacher, I spoke to my students at the assembly and during my lessons. This must stop! You will get my 101% support. Enough is enough. If men in this country are slow and ignorant, then we must call for a stop work. Then, they will wake up.
Gordon Wafimbi: In principle, men are supposed to be the leaders of their family. The family unit is supposed to be the basic building block of a society, and a nation. So many problems arise because we don’t assume our roles as the fathers and leaders we are supposed to be. This issue rightly should be taken up by men and fathers to show symbolically that we want to restore order to this chaos and protect our mothers, wives and daughters, simply because that’s how it should be, and it’s the right thing to do.
Chris Gari: It’s about time we men owned up and called a spade a spade and lead in putting a stop to this uncalled for behaviour. In the early 1990s at the UPNG, a group of us men led by Simon Sai Yanis, myself and others started a group called Men Against Violence (MAV). Our agenda included stopping of abuse, especially against women.
Richard Leka: Mi sem stret long PNG ia (I am ashamed of PNG)! How would people in another country view us, who seem to be waiting for such acts to be committed? We are truly known as the Land of the (Un)Expected. I have a wife, a daughter, a sister, and a mother and I don’t want them to continue to live in fear everyday in their country.
Philip Samson Yendowe: A suggestion, when it comes to violence against women (news of any killings, rape, etc); let’s start what we call “Lets shame the nation in silence”. All men wear black and women wear purple. The colours of shame and cherishment: Black – shame the devil in you; Purple – cherish the good heart and soul in you. By doing this nationwide, again and again the message should go down well with the average citizens and non-citizens, as well as the youths. We must put a stop to these horrific acts against our womenfolk.
Wilson Onea: All PNG men, including the 108 male members of parliament, must stand up and support the cause.
Elenora Auki: Come on and get on with it. Thumbs up to everyone for your support in this anti-violence campaign. Work is in progress. Great support from the Land Down Under.
Karry Frank: I suggest that we ask the churches to pray for the campaign. They should pray to God for blessings and success for those of you who are involved.
Fox Gorio: Men are heads of families. God gave this authority to fathers. If the father fails, the family and society will also fail. I say men must take the lead in the campaign of stopping violence against women.
Rex Paura: Enough talking. Let’s organise and get moving.