Shots fired at Koki as day of protest gets underway
10 April 2012
BY KEITH JACKSON
THE ABC’S LIAM FOX has just reported on Twitter that Papua New Guinea’s day of protest has started with an “ominous sign” with shots fired and cars stoned during an apparent ethnic clash at Koki in Port Moresby.
Earlier Fox had tweeted that Electoral Commissioner Andrew Trawen, who attended a cabinet meeting yesterday, was yet to endorse the goverment's latest plan to defer the issue of writs for the election by one month.
Demonstrators comprising unions, students, NGOs, churches and ordinary citizens assembled at Guise Stadium in Port Moresby this morning and are now marching on parliament house.
Prime minister Peter O’Neill yesterday declared that the march would be “illegal” but also said that parliament's vote to defer the national elections was not binding on the Electoral Commission.
Meanwhile prominent blogger and activist, Martyn Namorong, said this morning that the decision to postpone the election "was a violation of citizens right to stand for public office and the right to vote".
And respected commentator Tavurvur has tweeted that “the pressing requirement to be in government leading up to elections has compromised the substance of O'Namah's government”.
Tavurvur also reported “some serious conflict within the coalition” over recent events in PNG.
Am at work right now and hope situation will be fine by this arvo.
Posted by: Dee Araki | 10 April 2012 at 01:55 PM
I certainly hope that such antics as looting, stoning of innocent people's vehicles and inter-tribal violence is not true.
The march is supposed to be peaceful. Mayhem, is the last thing that PNG requires.
I guess with foreign minister Bob Carr reportedly enroute to Europe and then the UN with plenty of celebrity photo opportunities, the Australian response is in the hands of the person responsible here for Pacific Island Affairs, Richard Marles. He who is so quiet these days!
He might soon have to earn the salary that he is being paid.
Also something about the hospital facilities of Singapore, now Mugabe is reportedly there and also like his mate, Somare, fighting for his life!
The PNG Minister for Health should look into the services provided by the Singaporean government. Obviously second to none in the world!
Posted by: Colin Huggins | 10 April 2012 at 01:10 PM
Twitter reports say police have confirmed that many thousands are marching to Waigani, looting has occured in other parts of Moresby, shops have been burned and cars stoned.
I fear it will be a bad day.
Posted by: Peter Kranz | 10 April 2012 at 12:17 PM
The public in POM and other parts of the country must use common sense and be responsible as they take part in this protest march. The important thing is to make the parliamentarians aware of the concerns that people out on the streets have... NOT to cause trouble for other innocent citizens of the city and in other parts of the country (if there any such protest marches organized there).
Take care for those in POM and be cautious in your travels and activities for today and the next few days... Hopefully the crisis gets solved without any incidents, troubles, etc.
Posted by: Gabby Mavai | 10 April 2012 at 09:55 AM
One wonders why the cars of innocent people are being stoned. At least the cars of the people who caused the trouble (the politicians (ie who voted for the deferment) cars) should be stoned. But leave the others out. One wonders whether this is just a rabble or true protest.
Posted by: Jim Wilson | 10 April 2012 at 09:29 AM
It's quite tense in POM this morning. People are being encouranged to strike and march on parliament.
My route to work was blocked. PMVs being stoned and forced to turn around.
Take care everyone.
Posted by: Amanda Donigi | 10 April 2012 at 08:46 AM