An economic empowerment initiative with great historic and traditional significance intrinsically common across various cultures in Papua New Guinea was hosted this week in the Moresby South Electorate in the National Capital District.
The new Kaugere Market became the pioneer venue of hosting the inaugural Moresby South Motu Koitabu and East Mekeo Barter Trade which comprised of 125 women from East Mekeo who travelled in 9 highway trucks on a 9-hour trip to trade their fresh produce with the women of Motu Koita.
Moresby South-Motu Koita Women’s Representative and Barter Event Coordinator, Ms. Anna Skate thanked Moresby South MP Justin Tkatchenko for his continual support in the economic empowerment of Motu Koitabu women.
“Thank you Justin Tkatchenko for endorsing and supporting this inaugural barter trade between the East Mekeo and Motu Koita women. Not only does Honourable Tkatchenko look at developing the Electorate but he ensures the livelihoods of families are supported through initiatives such as this to sustain themselves especially when COVID has badly affected most low-income earning families,” Ms. Skate said.
Ms. Skate continued, “I am a strong believer of empowerment of women and projects such as this will empower our women to grow their network, change their mindset and their outlook in life as well as come together and work together to become agents of change in our communities.”
East Mekeo Women’s Representative, Mrs. Antoinette Aisa was impressed by the Kaugere Market facilities and was eager to continue this barter trading initiative with the women of Motu Koitabu in Moresby South.
“I would like to thank the beautiful mothers and beautiful environment of the market here in Moresby South. When I co-organized this event, we were aiming to trade with Pari Village but then decided to trade with larger Motu Koita community in Moresby South and got the backing of Tkatchenko so I am very happy and very proud,” Mrs. Aisa said.
MP Justin Tkatchenko praised the women of Mekeo for their galore of rich fresh garden produce and looked forward to many more bartering and trading in the future.
“To the Mekeo Women’s Representative, we’ll be honoured to partner with you to bring your produce in to Kaugere Market, to Moresby South and in our other markets. I am overwhelmed by the amount of fresh produce brought in by the 100 plus women of Mekeo to the point where the market is nearly full, it’s a fantastic result so come on down to Kaugere Market today and tomorrow to take advantage if these fresh garden produce at very low prices or you can barter and exchange items.”
Tkatchenko added, “What we’re doing here today is setting a new precedence by going back to our traditions and culture of our Central people trading and bartering with Motu Koitabu people as they have done for many generations but now we’re doing it in a more modern way.
”Tkatchenko stressed the importance of the reason that the people of Central Province come to Port Moresby and encouraged more relationship-building through barter initiatives as such.