Guards clash with youths

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The Guard Dog security vehicle going up in flames
Crowd gathering at Koki after a confrontation with youths from a nearby settlement with guards.

By SAMUEL BARIASI and SYLVESTER WEMURU
GUN shots were heard, stones hurled, a security vehicle was set ablaze and a youth was injured in a fight between guards and settlers in Port Moresby’s Koki on Saturday morning.
However, police managed to prevent the fighting from spreading and quelled tensions.
The public disorder broke out after a Wanigela man was confronted by a shop employee and security guards for causing a nuisance in front of the shop.
The man was allegedly letting off fire crackers.
K Mart shop assistant Tike Nanowa told The National his attempts to stop the man from causing further public disturbance caught the attention of Guard Dog security men who called in for support.
The man was then allegedly beaten up by the security guards and he fled to his settlement where he mobilised a support group.
The shop was locked down to keep people from breaking in or looting.
Gunshots were fired, rocks thrown and a Guard Dog vehicle parked in front of the gate to keep people out was set on fire before police arrived to bring the situation under control.
A Wanigela youth is said to have been injured and was admitted in the Port Moresby General Hospital.
Police have yet to make any arrests as the unruly youths and crowd fled when the police arrived.
National Capital District/Central police commander Acting Asst Comm (ACP) Anthony Wagambie Jr said quick response had stopped the public violence from deteriorating and raising tensions.
He commended his men for their quick response and professionalism in bringing the public violence under control.
ACP Wagambie said the public disorder was sparked by an argument that resulted in a man being allegedly beaten up by security guards at a shop near the Koki fish market.
“After the man was assaulted, he organised a group of youths from a nearby settlement who then confronted and fought with the guards,” he added.
ACP Wagambie urged the public to refrain from taking the law into their own hands.
“If you are unhappy about anything, including assaults, report to the police and let us deal with the matter.
“We will not hesitate to deal with people who break the law.
“The public arrest is now under investigations and we appeal to witnesses to help us,” he added.
In another public disorder in Port Moresby, police confirmed another fight broke out at 9-Mile.
Police had not received a brief and were unable to confirm how many people were involved.

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