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08 February 2016


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Thank you Yalkuna Joe for this strong insight. We need the world to know that YAKA exists, and it must be the emblem of change in our changing society. Wai wo.

Joe Kuman's story not only highlights the stupidity and animalistic behaviours of people to just die over trival matters in Simbu but here in Enga province as well.

I have witnessed hundreds of people in this province killed over the years in tribal fights which escalated after arguments over who should play first at a snooker table, theft of a dead opposum in a trap set by another man in the bush, arguments over who should harvest one single bunch of pandanus nut in the bush, arguments over marbles started by children in which parents joined in followed by everybody else etc... Our people are really like babies pissing onto themselves and crying.

I highlighted this phenomenan - this deplorable senseless attitude of our people in my upcoming book 'I Can See My Country Clearly Now' soon to be released through Pukpuk publishing and to be available on

Congradulations to YAKA Inc. I appauld the brains behind such a good initiative. You have choosen the route to find true happiness, reconciliation and peace in the communities. YAKA Inc is like a mirror through which the people can see themselves.

At one level it is hard to read this without feeling utterly despondent. How on earth could such stupidly trivial issues have been allowed to escalate into open warfare?

On the other hand, it is uplifting that Joe Kuman and others have finally been able to get people to see reason and, hopefully, reconstruct hitherto fractured tribal relationships.

As a kiap, I and others worked very hard to impose the rule of law in PNG and to suppress tribal fighting.

We did so because the very harsh lesson of history is that only the rule of law, where no-one is above and beyond that law, establishes the conditions in which people can live their lives in reasonable safety and security.

Obviously, being the creation of humans and subject to their usual foibles, the rule of law is still imperfect. However, it beats open warfare every time. Just look at places like Syria, Libya and Iraq, where the rule of law has been subordinated to the rule of the gun.

So, in their own way, Joe and his supporters are seeking to impose the rule of law, albeit by creating a tribal specific structure to do so.

This is both a brilliant idea and, by inference, an indictment of the PNG government, which frequently seems unable to enforce the rule of law much beyond the boundaries of PNG's major cities. Even then enforcement sometimes seems rather problematic.

I sincerely hope that the creation of YAKA Inc. will work to the great benefit of the Yuri people, especially the women and children, who are the usual victims of internecine fighting.

Wonderful story.

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