The National – Thursday, February 17, 2011
By ALISON ANIS
ARCHBISHOP of Port Moresby Catholic archdiocese John Ribat has called on government and law enforcers to deal effectively with alcohol abuse within communities and minimise drinking, especially in public places which, he said, was putting people’s lives and safety at risk.
Ribat said the churches were concerned with the increased misuse of alcohol and other associated substances like drugs in public places, especially among young people, and urged both authorities to exercise their power to come up with stringent policies and legislation to effectively minimise alcohol-related or similar problems.
“The church is concerned with how to respond effectively to alcohol abuse in our communities and is encouraging government to take effective approach to deal with the alcohol misuse in our societies,” Ribat said, when giving the churches’ perspective towards addressing alcohol abuse at the last day of the “Alcohol Abuse in PNG” symposium held at the PNG Institute of Public Administration hall yesterday
He said it was a concern nowadays to see people holding a bottle of beer and drinking freely in public places and that everyone else, including law enforcers, were turning a blind eye on the issue.
“This has become an accepted part of life because we have allowed this to happen.
“The law enforcers have the responsibility to ensure that this practice is prohibited but this is not happening,” Ribat said.
“Of course this must not be seen as the work of the law enforcers but need also the hand of the government and every concerned citizen, including parents, to deal effectively with it,” he added.
Ribat called on authorities to come up with workable solutions that will see that abusers of alcohol are removed from public places to ensure safety of the public.