The National, Tuesday October 8th, 2013
TWENTY-six councillors and a president of the Lai Valley local level government (LLG) were sworn into office in Mendi, Southern Highlands, last Friday.
Those present to witness the councillors and the president’s swearing in were Mendi senior magistrate Vincent Araliya, Muniu LLG advisor Kunjip Tundipi, Highlands region LLG advisor Kenny Gaso, Mendi district administrator James Ambiap and police officers.
The ceremony was held at the Muniu Community School.
It was described as a historical moment for the people of Lai Valley to see for the first time their leaders taking their oaths of office.
President Jack Soal told more than 10,000 people who came to witness the swearing in; this was a sign of bringing peace between tribal zones.
“Today is time for us to restore and rebuild the Muniu Station that was run down for more than 20 years,” he said.
He urged the councillors to support him rebuild the communities with a new vision to restore infrastructure developments such as roads, health and education and law and order.
Soal said council meetings would be conducted at Muniu Station where previously there was none conducted.
He urged councillors to work hard to restore peace within their communities.
He said he would give full support and work with the local MP to deliver basic government services to the people.
Soal praised the prime minister for having all councillors, village court magistrates, and court officials on the pay roll.
“If government is recognising and having you on pay roll, you have to be honest and work hard to restore peace in the district and communities,” he said.
Ambiap said the councillors and the president taking their oaths were pledging to work with leaders and people in the communities and urged them to work extra hard to deliver services.
He said he would work closely with the councillors, president and the local MP to rebuild the rundown station.