7 Jan 2004

Sir Peter Barter slams provincial government for eviction process

1:21 pm on 7 January 2004

Papua New Guinea's Inter-Government Relations minister says that the provincial government's handling of settler evictions in Madang was disgusting.

Sir Peter Barter, whose electorate is Madang, says the provincial government acted out of hand in not properly organising or consulting relevant authorities prior to the eviction of illegal settlers.

He says there are thousands of settlers who are now suffering without food or shelter and the situation breeches human rights as well.

"I'm going to bring up the matter in the provincial assembly here in Madang and ask or demand explanations. I hope the people will join me in doing so, and Im sure the local members will do the same. Its not a question of what's right or what's wrong. The eviction exercise, there's probably a good case for it, but not the way it was done."

Sir Peter Barter says 124-thousand US dollars from the government's emergency fund was approved to assist evictees with transport back to their provinces.

But he says government money will go directly to the National Disaster Office, rather than to the provincial government to distribute.