“I'm afraid to live in this country. Police officers and army men think they're above the law and that they can get away with so many things. Corruption runs rampant in these streets” - Kaliop Ingirin Tomai
BOMAI DOO *
PORT MORESBY – I am still on probation in my job and the pay is really not enough to live on. I spend half of it on bus fares to get to and from work.
But who am I to complain or quit my job when so many accounting graduates from the universities are roaming the streets doing nothing.
I was very fortunate to get the job because I only graduated this year from a newly established training institute.
After my probation, my company’s administration will decide whether to keep me and increase my pay or lay me off.
Right now I'm working my guts out to impress my boss so he will keep me.
City life is very hard unlike the Highlands town where I was born and lived.
There, every place was a safe walking distance from school, work or hospital.
Here you have to catch a bus - or walk and get robbed by the raskols.
I've seen men and women murdered when they tried to defend themselves from the robbers.
Some groups literally rob you in the middle of the crowd and passers-by won't try to defend you because everybody knows what these gangs are capable of.
Nowadays the police never have foot patrols in the roads and streets.
They sit with lots of gravity in colourful Toyota ten-seater vehicles, speeding here and there in cruisers they have given names like FOX 203 and THUNDER ONE.
All sorts of names but never seeming to catch the culprits.
In Port Moresby, the price of the food and essential goods has been sky rocketing since the Marape regime was installed.
I'm not complaining really because I can survive, but I can't get a good night’s sleep thinking about other girls like me, or even younger than I am, going into evil ways just to earn a meal for the day.
So I’m trying to form an association which will look for ways to help the youths who live in the same settlement where I live.
I did some interviewing and found that most of those rounding the streets of Moresby and doing all sorts of immoral activities are Highlanders.
I also found out that their situation was the fault of irresponsible guardians or parents.
They don’t ensure these troubled people get even a little education
I know one girl's village because her late father and my father came from the same district.
When I asked her where she’s from she said the name of a district.
So I asked again, are you sure.
And she made a facial gesture, screamed and said ‘I don't know’.
They don’t even know their own village. And if they did return, there would be nothing there for them.
They’re stuck in Moresby which doesn’t car e for them and with no place to go back to.
* This is the pen name of a real person who lives and works in Port Moresby