City Rangers In PNG Capital District Accused Of Violently Abusing Power

Growing number of victims complain about so-called 'city protectors' 

By Franklin Kolma

PORT MORESBY, Papua New Guinea (PNG Post-Courier, Feb. 21, 2017) – Reckless and violent behavior shown by NCD City Rangers in Port Moresby has citizens worried that the city protectors may be taking advantage of their powers.

According to members of the public, numerous violent incidents involving NCD rangers are being reported on a weekly basis and that most of the time, the instigators and wrong doers are the Rangers themselves.

Yesterday, Norman Wari of Central Province told Post Courier that he was attacked last week by rangers for spitting in a public area.  Norman said that it was uncalled for and a clear sign of thugs being empowered to bully disguised as representatives of the city authority.

Another incident involving an elderly woman was reported two weeks ago in which the woman was chased across a road into oncoming traffic for selling cigarettes and beaten with a stick.

Incidents such as the mentioned have been reported on a number of occasions to the police, but the police say there is always lack of evidence and often brush it aside.

A growing number of victims of such acts by rangers are beginning to publish their woes on social and mainstream media asking for actions to be taken to regulate and monitor NCD ranger behavior.

Boroko based lead ranger Samson Akua told Post Courier yesterday that he has encountered many situations where he has had to reprimand rangers under him for allegedly committing violent acts against citizens.

He further explained that while this was the case, in many of these instances, the need for physical force is often thrust upon the rangers due to the lack of understanding and cooperation that citizens show to the rangers.

“I have worker in the NCD ranger programme since 2013 and in all this time I have yet to see citizens who genuinely respect us and what we are charged with doing,” said the lead ranger.

He said that rangers are mainly there to ensure the city amenities like roads, fences, signs and buildings are respected and that they are also obliged under that mandate to protect citizens of the state.

PNG Post-Courier
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Countries around the globe watch PNG as it struggles. Violence by authorities never solved social problems. The lady selling cigarettes and the pickpocket boys are struggling to survive on one green banana a day. PNG needs to get its corrupt head pulled off and screwed on straight. It is easy to say that the badly behaved security services need to do their job professionally and then the people will respect them. But firstly, the government needs to provide good education and jobs or the cycle of desperation and violence will continue. It is easy to blame bad security, but really, bad governance and failure to provide good services to the PNG people is at the core of this problem. The money from large international mining companies is stolen by corrupt political fat cats and the money never improves services or makes its way to the people. Fix the grass root economy or face the same problems forever...

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