6 Jul 2006

Paying compensation hurts traditional PNG societies and should be abolished - leader

7:02 pm on 6 July 2006

A leader in Papua New Guinea's Western Highlands is calling for a law change to make paying compensation illegal.

The Post Courier newspaper reports Mt Hagen businessman, David Raim, made the call after his tribe paid thousands of dollars and dozens of pigs to the family of a female university student stabbed to death by her husband in Lae last year.

Mr Raim and his tribesmen paid the compensation to the woman's relatives because her tribes blamed Mr Raim's clan for the death.

He says paying compensation in this fashion is a major problem affecting the Highlands people.

Mr Raim says people are being forced to dig deep into their pockets to contribute pigs and money to try and solve problems like rape, murder, and theft and to deal with controversies over land.

He says law and justice is not being implemented properly when people not involved in the crimes are forced to pay compensation.