NGO distances itself from proposed marches

National, Normal


A NON-governmental organisation has disassociated itself from the proposed march by its fellow NGO and the civil society in trying to pressure the government to quickly recall parliament to, among others, revisit the environmental amendment laws and the Maladina bill.
Melanesian Solidarity (Melsol) group general secretary, Sila Giri, and another senior member, Paul Esikia, said in Lae last Friday that their group had decided to apply the brakes because a series of events taking place around some parts of the country derived from NGO-led rallies, had turned out to have more negative impacts than good on the public.
The two men gave example of the burning down of a shop in Kainantu and the stoning of trucks ferrying cargoes up the Highlands Highway in recent weeks by thugs.
“Melanesian Solidarity is every bit an NGO group and we agree in principle with our colleagues, but the recent happenings were not what we would promote.”
They said opportunists and criminals took advantage of the situations and caused trouble to innocent people.
Giri said the government was petitioned by the NGOs but, as it has been in recent past, business houses and the ordinary people ended up being victims. “Something here is not right,” he said. 
The two men said some politicians may have used the situation to air their dissatisfaction of the government but that was not the way to go.
“If politicians or anyone hiding behind NGOs are also involved, then they should give the current government the few remaining months to run the country and take their frustrations to the polls in 2012,” they said.
They said destruction of properties, harassments of the ordinary people and stoning of trucks will “eventually paint a black picture” on the work of NGO groups.