Lawlessness within Hanuabada and other Motu-Koita villages will be in the spotlight when a workable Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) is signed between the Motu-Koita Assembly (MKA) and the Royal PNG Police Constabulary with achievable outcomes and best practices in addressing Law and Order.
NCD/Central Divisional Commander ACP Anthony Wagambie Jnr said police and MKA have embarked on an MoU to have a community approach to policing Hanuabada and its neighboring villages since late 2019 after taking office. While it was work in progress, Covid-19 put all plans on halt, taking up most of 2020 as well.
“After taking office as Divisional Commander late 2019, I had a formal meeting with Chairman Motu Koita Dadi Toka Jr around November 2019, where he had raised concerns about law and order issues in Hanuabada and MK villages,” said ACP Wagambie Jnr.
Mr Wagambie said Hanuabada is a very sensitive area to Police, given the previous incidences of confrontation between Police and the villagers, leading to serious injuries and death.
“This happened well before I took office. I had made assurance to the villagers that neutral investigation from Police Headquarters Crimes Directorate was to take place.”
“Early last week, Chairman Toka Jr and his team met with Commissioner of Police David Manning to initiate the MOU.”
“I got in touch with Chairman Toka Jr and a meeting was arranged between myself and team which included Metropolitan Superintendent NCD Superintendent Gideon Ikumu, NCD Policing Zone One Commander Chief Inspector Fred Tundu along with Chairman MKA and his team.”
“From the policing perspective, we want the MOU to be practical and achievable.”
He said from past experiences, MOU/MOA’s are signed, looking good on paper but not easily achieved physically.
He said NCD Metsupt Mr Ikumu and his team have worked on this with MKA ensuring that the MOU will achieve that.
“I thank Chairman Dadi Toka Jr for his understanding and flexibility in allowing us to have our input.I understand the MOU is now ready for Commissioner of Police David Manning to sign after Police Legal Officers peruse it.”
“The Police Commissioner is the only person authorised to sign MOU/MOA on behalf of the Royal Papua New Guinea Constabulary,”said Wagambie.
He said while this was being worked on, an unfortunate incident occurred last weekend, of a young Hanuabada male losing his life in a confrontation between youths from neighbouring Baruni village. This now proves that we must move fast.
“We must understand that Motu Koita villages, in particular Hanuabada situation is quite different from the rest of the country. Their traditional hunting, gardening and fishing areas have been taken up by the fast pace of development of the Capital City of PNG, Port Moresby.”
“It is something which they didn’t chose, it has been inheritated over the years, which they have to live with. Nonetheless, this still does not warrant the villagers to break the law.”
ACP Wagambie Jnr said issues such as homebrew distilling and sales will be addressed as well as unnecessary stopping of traffic on main roads. He said he is confident both parties will be able to address and manage law and order issues within Hanuabada and Motu Koitabu villages once the MOU is signed.
“I envision a community approach to policing in this particular environment. Giving back ownership of law and order issues.”
“It will be a test kit, and if it works out well it can be used in other communities. With every new intervention of projects, it will be work in progress. We will get better as we move along, adjusting along the way.”