Tribesmen want college to be named after son

National, Normal

The National,Tuesday17 January 2012

THE tribesmen of the late Mark Manabi from Aku clan, South Koroba, Hela, have called for authorities to honour the agreement to build a technical college in his honour for the service he gave to the country.
Manabi was one of the first petroleum engineers and was one of the directors of the Department of Petroleum and Energy before his death.
Community leader and tribesman Harry Meria speaking on behalf of the relatives and eight other tribes said that the Department of Petroleum and Energy led by then secretary Joseph Gabut in 2009 said that a technical school was going to be built in honour of Manabi and  named after him.
He said the people applauded the announcement as it was going to be named after their son Manabi.
The people made land available for the college as a major development to be experienced in the area.
However, he said, a formal announcement was made in front of the Governor of Southern Highlands Anderson Agiru, officers from the Southern Highlands provincial education division, district administrator Stanley Kotange, district education officer Gobe Julie and CEO William Bando and local MP John Kekeno.
Meria said as tribesmen and landowners of the Juha UBSA signing in Kokopo, they also signed an agreement to establish the college with ExxonMobil but no work had started.
He said it was a pride for the community to have the college named after their son but if it was relocated to another site, they are prepared to take the matter to court.
He said there were people lobbying to take the college to another location and that had angered the people.
He said Agiru, Kotange, Julie, the provincial education board and the Department of Petroleum and Energy must state clearly when and where the school would be built.
 and where it will be built.
He said they should also state if the college would be named after if relocated.
He said it would be wrong if what was promised was not fulfilled.