By ZACHERY PER
VILLAGE courts have been in the forefront to settle disputes that could erupt into full scale tribal fights but their efforts have failed to gain the full recognition of successive governments.
However, that has changed for Village Court officials in the Kerowagi district, Simbu province.
Kerowagi MP Guma Wau has allocated a new vehicle, uniforms and a K50-monthly allowance top-up for all the 180 officials.
Mr Wau made the announcements and officially handed over the vehicle to the village court last Wednesday.
“Without peace and harmony in the community, service deliveries and development initiatives will not be possible.
The Village Court officials have been in the forefront to resolve conflicts and settle disputes to maintain real peace in the villages.
“But successive governments overlooked their role as peacekeepers, leaving them to fend for themselves with a lousy K32 monthly allowance.
Mr Wau’s top-up for each of the 180 officials mean they will receive K82 per month in allowance.
He made available K250,000 from his law and order allocation of K1 million under the K10 million for the top-up exercise.
“The first payments will be made at the end of this month,” he said.
Simbu provincial Village Court officer Peter Nulai applauded Mr Wau’s announcement, saying the support would go a big way to help alleviate the plight of village court officials not only in Kerowagi but also in other districts in the province.
He said the new Toyota Landcruiser, to be stationed at the provincial headquarter in Kundiawa, would also serve other districts.