Isikiel: Naru not bold

National, Normal

The National, Tuesday 30th April 2013


HOUSING Minister Paul Isikiel protested yesterday that Governor Kelly Naru had failed to make a bold stand in the killing of a pastor in Lae, Morobe, recently.

Isikiel claimed it was part of previous killings and intimidation of Morobe people by highlanders going back for years but the governor has failed to make a bold stand.

“Where is the government of Morobe to provide key vital services and security to its people?

 “As a national leader I will not sit back and see my people being bullied and killed like animals in my own city and province,” the Markham MP said.

The Martin Luther Seminary student killing is the subject of a petition presented last week to the Naru government.

Naru immediately ruled out mass eviction of Western Highlanders, saying it was “far reaching” and “his government needed to study the legal, social and economic implications before reaching a decision”.  

However, the governor pointed out the other areas of the demand such as reserving transport business, private enterprises and informal markets for Morobeans are already existing policy directives of his government.

 “The death of Kewa Michael is tragic and I condemn it in the strongest possible terms.”

Naru said there was an imbalance in Morobe where the locals were minority players, especially in business, while other groups dominated these sectors. 

“My government has been working since day one to rectify this imbalance and I am confident to say that we are at a very advanced stage already,” he said.

“I have always advocated a one-man one-block policy and it will be legislated in this province when the provincial lands board is properly gazetted soon.

“This law will enable us to thoroughly investigate all landholdings in Lae and those found to have acquired land through scrupulous deals will be exposed and deposed accordingly.”

“Public motor vehicle licences will also be reviewed and 60% will be reserved for Morobe people to get into the PMV, taxi and hire car business.

“This will also apply in part to small and medium enterprises such as tucker shops, second hand clothing shops, fast food outlets and informal markets.

“I want people from the very remote parts of the nine districts to get into Lae and operate small businesses.”

The governor will sign a memorandum of understanding with the National Development Bank this week that will allow Morobeans to start drawing soft loans from K2 million parked with the bank.