Mairi says Kaupa was serious about developing rugby league


Southern Confederation director Gwaibo Mairi has expressed shock at the passing of his Northern counterpart Russ Kaupa, pictured.
“This still is a shock to me after learning of the Late Kaupa’s passing in Lae on Sunday,” Mairi said.
“He had served rugby league for more than four decades in Lae and the Northern region.
“This is a sad month for rugby league, as league administrator and technical official Timothy Lepa died in a car accident on the Markham section of the highway.
“For me, it’s a great loss for rugby league in the country.”
Mairi, on behalf of his confederation, extended his condolences to the family of the Late Kaupa, who passed away at the age of 63 after a long illness. Mairi said despite his age, the Late Kaupa took his role seriously to develop the sport in his region.
He said the Late Kaupa was a true champion of the sport.
“The Late Kaupa, Highlands Confederation director Joe Tokam, New Guinea Islands Confederation director Aloysius Tobata and I worked as a team to develop league in PNG,” Mairi said.
“We will long remember his contributions to rugby league development in the country.”
Meanwhile, Lepa’s funeral service will be in Lae today and after that, his body will be repatriated to Enga.
PNG Rugby Football League chairman Sandis Tsaka is in Lae to pay his last respects.