PNG Farewells Late Hela Provincial Governor Anderson Agiru

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Pacific Islands Development Program, East-West Center With Support From Center for Pacific Islands Studies, University of Hawai‘i

Body to be flown to Hela, transported throughout province for last respects

By Merolyn Ten

PORT MORESBY, Papua New Guinea (PNG Post-Courier, May 12, 2016) – PNG’s Capital yesterday gave its final farewell to Hela Governor the late Anderson Pawa Agiru in a packed and moving in-state funeral at the Sir John Guise indoor complex at Waigani.

It was like the who’s who of this country led by the Prime Minister Peter O’Neill and Members of Parliament including Opposition Leader Sam Basil and the Chief Justice Sir Salamo Inja who paid their last respects to the well known MP.

Departmental and heads of statutory bodies, diplomats, foreign dignitaries, company executives, high profile personalities, school friends, landowner leaders, relatives and hundreds of mourning Hela and Southern Highlands people of Port Moresby were also among the viewers.

The final tributes were given by the Tari-Pori MP and Finance Minister James Marape, Koroba-Kopiago MP Philip Undialu while Vincent Agiru gave his elder brother’s eulogy.

"God takes and God gives," Mr Undialu said.

He said late Agiru knew his time was near and he prepared himself well.

The MP described late Agiru as a true unique and passionate man of the people whose encouragements were to gain from sweat.

"Late Agiru always tells us not to expect from PNG LNG but to plant 100 coffee trees and raise 10 pigs every year.

"He fought very hard for Hela to be a separate province, and promoted peace and unity in the Province," Mr Undialu said.

He added that as an initiator to the Gulf to Southern Higlands road links, the new link will be named the Agiru Highway.

Mr Marape said the late Agiru was one of the greatest writer and speaker in the history of Papua New Guinea who had a heart for his people and will never be forgotten.

"The legend of late Agiru in Hela and Southern Highlands Provinces and the entire country through his visionary leadership will always be remembered," said Vincent, the younger brother.

He thanked Papua New Guineans who shared tears mourning the death of his elder brother and called on Hela and Southern Highlanders to maintain peace and dignity during the mourning period.

After the eulogy, Prime Minister Peter O’Neill led high profiled delegates to lay wreaths before the viewing of the casket.

Late Agiru’s casket left this morning at 5am to Mendi, Southern Highlands province. It will be flown to Hela Province then to all electorates for his people to pay their last respects before burial.

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our governor andeson agiru pass away without say good bye to his people. we were surprise bcos when he was dai in pasific hospital.

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