MORE than 3,000 Papua New Guineans participated in the United Nations’ “Stand up take action” Millennium campaign last weekend.
They were part of a world record 173 million people who participated in the campaign worldwide.
The three-day campaign in PNG saw 3,220 people join people around the world to remind their governments to end poverty and achieve the Millennium Development Goals set in 2000.
UN acting resident coordinator Jan-Jillies van der Hoevan said last Friday that this year’s campaign would be in the Guinness Book of World Records, with a total of 173,045,325 million people in 117 countries participating in 3,000 activities in this massive global movement.
The Asia-Pacific region included PNG, Australia, Fiji and New Zealand.
Mr van der Hoevan said when the campaign was launched in September, PNG had less than three weeks to organise the event and he congratulated the churches and civil society organisations for taking ownership and leadership of the campaign.
Through the Department of Community and Development, the Council of Churches gave their support to Salvation Army which, under Capt John Kerari’s leadership, organised and led the campaign at the Oro Village settlement behind Jackson Airport.
Secretary-General of PNG Council of Churches, Albert Rovi, said the churches were very proud to have been involved in this campaign as it was a milestone and an historical event for PNG.
Mr Rovi said this was an opportunity for continual effort to end all poverty in PNG and hoped to achieve good results before 2015, with the churches now looking forward to the challenges ahead.
Capt Kerari said despite the police blanket ban on public rallies and marches, he was confident that by next year, this problem would be resolved and with the partnership of NGOs and churches, the target of one million Papua New Guineans standing up and taking action would be achieved.