4 Mar 2005

Roadblock has ended on Bougainville

6:43 pm on 4 March 2005

The Governor of the Papua New Guinea island of Bougainville says intervention by the commander of the Bougainville Revolutionary Army has ended a key roadblock.

A months-long roadblock at Aropa has targetted Australian police working on Bougainville, and has prevented New Zealand police from paying community police at Buin.

Governor John Momis says there has been community pressure and meetings with members of the breakaway Mekamui Defence Force faction that mounted the roadblock.

But he says the dismantling of the roadblock, on Tuesday, is really down to the efforts of BRA commander Ishmael Toroama.

"He actually talked to them, he actually talked to them, because he comes from the same area. He actually told them that there was no need for the roadblock and the Mekamuis and the rest of Bougainville should be working together to prepare for the elections. And in fact that is the feeling throughout the island."

The Bougainville Governor, John Momis, says community police at Buin have now been paid, but he believes this was done by helicopter before the roadblock was lifted.