Police in Western Highlands Province have moved into a village 5km outside Mt. Hagen City following the tribal conflict between the Moge Nambka Tribe of Hagen and the Kopi Tribe of Mt. Kuta.
Provincial Police Commander, Chief Superintendent John Sagom told PNG HAUSBUNG that this was a result of incidents that occurred on Mother’s Day that continued onto Monday and the death of a clan leader of the Moge Nambka.
“An employee of Black Swan who was also a villager there, was heading back into the village using the company vehicle.”
“Youths who were under the influence of alcohol blocked of the road and had an argument, assaulted the driver damaging the vehicle.”
The Chief Superintendent stated that the Black Swan employee, a supervisor in the security firm allegedly returned home and early hours the next day attacked the homes of the youths. Police received word of the impending attack and all manpower in the city was sent to contain the situation but were unable to do so, being badly outnumbered by both tribes.
“We received intelligence of the attack and were there in the morning as early as 5-6 o’clock.” “However, we were outnumbered by the villagers.”
“Our manpower couldn’t contain the mob that came in to attack the other tribe.”
A tribe leader from the Moge Nambka was wounded and rushed to the hospital where they later received news of his death due to loss of blood. A couple of houses were burnt down in the process.
Police have now intervened and the PPC has spoken to both leaders of the tribe and has sternly advised both tribes to not take the laws into their own hands and that police are already dealing with the situation. A task force has already been set up to investigate the matter.