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Papua New Guinea Police Minister Bryan Kramer has indicated that the brutal murder of 16 men, women and two unborn children in the Tari-Pori district over the weekend could have been averted with adequate funding and capacity-building.
Kramer said senior police officers stationed in tribal clash-prone areas had been aware of underlying conflicts well before they came to a head last weekend.
However, he said requests to boost capability and manpower were ignored by previous governments.
“As our institutions are collapsing, the viciousness at the community level is getting worse,” Kramer said.
“This is not just from Tari; I have suffered the same in my own electorate — and so has the former deputy prime minister in Alotau.
“The challenges have been that they (senior officers in conflict zones) haven’t got the resources nor given the support to address this.
“I’m sure they’ve made recommendations to previous governments, which were, unfortunately, ignored.
“But when these situations occur, they are blamed when in actual fact, they foresaw all these issues.”
This comes after the Tagali local level government massacre in the Hela Province and the slaughter of another 14 people in a tribal fight that has ravaged the Mul-Baiyer district of Western Highlands Province for the past six weeks.
Kramer said it was important to manage expectations in regard to the capacity of the Royal PNG Constabulary, especially when the ratio of police to the number of citizens in the country was approximately one-to-X1133.
SOURCE: POST COURIER/PACNEWS
Pacific Islands News Association
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