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By Harlyne Joku

PORT MORESBY, Papua New Guinea (September 5, 2000 – The National/PINA Nius Online)---Boera villagers staged a traditional welcome dance and drama at the Defense Force Lancron base while the Royal Papuan Constabulary Band played merrily to welcome the 1606 replica of the sailing Dutch exploration ship Duyfken as it sailed into Port Moresby Harbor.

Moresby South MP Lady Carol Kidu welcomed the captain and crew of Duyfken and presented them with a model Lakatoi on behalf of the Motu-Koitabu people, whom she described as the traditional residents and landowners of Port Moresby.

She told Captain Peter Manthorpe when presenting the gift that the Lakatoi was a traditional form of transport similar to the Duyfken used by the Motuans to go on trading expeditions with the people of Gulf province.

Mining and Bougainville Affairs Minister Sir Michael Somare also welcomed the Duyfken, saying their coming to Port Moresby was a great way to begin PNG's 25th Anniversary celebrations which, according to the National Events Council, officially started on September 2.

He said the first British flag was hoisted some 200 years ago on the PNG shores, marking the first form of colonization.

Capt. Peter Manthorpe said it was privilege for the ship and crew to be in Port Moresby to be part of the silver jubilee celebrations.

He said that the welcoming reception was great and none like the ones hosted on the other stops on their journey from Perth to Port Moresby.

"You've made us feel so welcome here. Port Moresby is a magnificent harbor and we are glad to be part of your celebrations," Capt. Manthorpe said.

Chevron managing director Isikeli Taureka, the sponsors of the Duyfken expedition, said Chevron was extremely pleased to be associated with the Duyfken voyage and said the ship was now open for the public and school children to visit.

Chevron has spent in total AUD$ 300,000 (US$ 172,812) to assist the Duyfken voyage.

For additional reports from The National, go to PACIFIC ISLANDS REPORT News/Information Links: Newspapers/The National (Papua New Guinea).

Pacific Islands News Association (PINA) Website: 

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