HIGHLANDS police commander ACP Simon Kauba blames elected leaders for the escalating law and order problems, especially in the Southern Highlands and Enga provinces.
“Return home and address the problems. Don’t hide in Port Moresby. You are elected by the people, so return home, stay with them and resolve the disputes,” he said.
ACP Kauba said: “Elected local leaders must not just allow the people to take the law into their own hands. They should sit with their people, listen to their grouses and address the issues. This will result in ever-lasting peace, and will significantly minimise lawlessness.
“The people are looking upon their leaders to provide strong leadership and guidance.”
ACP Kauba said leaders in resource rich Hela region must educate their people to organise themselves and participate meaningfully in the multi-billion-kina liquefied natural gas (LNG) project, instead of allowing them to fight and disrupt the developments taking place in their area.
“The people in the Southern Highlands must appreciate the big project coming up in their province because they are the ones who will be benefit more, unlike other Highlands provinces.
“This project will completely change their way of living and raise their quality of life. There is no need for them to take up arms and try to stop project developments.”
ACP Kauba urged Southern Highlanders and their leaders to use their common sense and to participate in the developments taking place.
He commended mobile squad (MS) 9, 11 and 3 based in Hides for a job well done in protecting the developers, public facilities and maintaining order in the district.
ACP Kauba said the squads had competent commanders on the ground and were able to handle any situations that may arise.
“If there is a need for additional police manpower, we will deploy more officers. At the moment, the squads are sufficient,” he said.