Police urge supporters to keep calm

National, Normal

The National, Tuesday July 30th, 2013


POLICE in Lae have warned supporters of unsuccessful candidates for the mayor’s seat to maintain law and order and stay out of trouble.

Police Chief Iven Lakatani yesterday issued the warning following the election victory of Koim Trilue Leahy last Friday as the new mayor, defeating incumbent James Khay and 44 other candidates.

Lae, the industrial hub of the country, is known for sporadic ethnic clashes and election-related violence.  

“The people have spoken through the ballot and losing candidates and their supporters must respect that decision,” Lakatani said.

“We already have enough problems.”

Lakatani said if losing candidates were not happy with the election results, they should take the matter to court and not encourage supporters to cause problems.

“The court of disputed returns is the right place to go to,” he said.

He also told supporters to refrain from causing problems saying elections come and go but their lives were important.

“Think about yourselves. If you die, will these people (candidates) come and bury you?” he asked.

Meanwhile, police have thanked the public for their cooperation in making the LLG elections in Lae a success despite a few incidents.