Wenge: Execute death penalty

Main Stories, National

The National, Thursday, May 12, 2011


MOROBE Governor Luther Wenge has called on the government to introduce capital punishment.
Wenge made the call in parliament during debate on the ministerial statement on the 2011-17 culture and tourism master plan by the Minister for Culture and Tourism, Guma Wau.
He said in order to encourage tourism, “laws must be implemented to terminate people who abuse the law”.
He said parliament had passed the death penalty and “it is about time the laws are implemented so that people will respect the laws and do things according to the law”.
Wenge said by having tough laws, “people will abide by them and further encourage foreign visitors”.
He said introducing the law was the way forward to encourage tourism, “which is a sleeping gold mine that will turn the economy of this country”.
He said Papua New Guinea had unique cultures, traditions, heritage, fauna and flora and many other interesting places like the World War II sites unlike many other parts of the world.
He said PNG was the last frontier with more than 800 languages.
Wenge said in order to attract tourists, the government must enforce the law that parliament had passed.
 “Dispela government em poret lain. Yupela ol poret man istap olsem na yupela ino inap karimaut dispela lo.
“Sapos mi praim minister, bai mi karimaut dispela lo (This government is afraid. You are all afraid to execute the death penalty. If I was the prime minister, I will enforce the law),” the Morobe governor said in Tok Pisin.
Wenge said the law must be implemented without fear or favour because people continued to commit crimes, knowing that the penalties “are lesser and that they can prove their innocence and come out”.
He said once the law was enforced, “the attitude of our people will change as they will be afraid to commit crime and be involved in other activities”.
“Forget the wantok system and terminate all criminals,” he said. 
“Since the law was passed on the floor of parliament, the National Court did sentence a man to death, however, the ruling was quashed in an appeal and, since then, no court has ever ruled based on that law.”
Wenge said there were several constraints in promoting tourism.
“Foreigners tarnish our name when they label our country a dangerous place to visit while we have contributed to the constraints with our law and polices,” he said.
During debate, Sport Minister Philemon Embel and NCD Governor Powes Parkop appealed to the nation to change their attitude towards the environment and to respect others.
They said because of the attitude of the people, “international visitors and tourists cannot be encouraged”.
They said in order to encourage tourism, the people “have to play their part and change their way of thinking and doing things like littering and violence and crime”.