Tourism Policing introduced in PNG's Kundiawa Gembogl
Papua New Guinea's Kundiawa Gembogl district introduces tourism policing to make tourists feel safer.
The MP for Papua New Guinea's Kundiawa Gembogl district says almost 100 men have completed training in tourism policing as part of efforts to make visitors to the area feel safe.
The highest mountain in the country, Mt Wilhelm, is the district's key tourist attraction.
Tobias Kulang says the majority of the 92 men will be posted along the track of Mt Wilhelm at five kilometre intervals to maintain law and order.
He says the training is partly in response to last year's attack on trekkers on the Black Cat track in Morobe province, where three local porters were killed.
Tobias Kulang says he wants to send a clear signal to the international community that it Mt Wilhelm is a safe destination to visit.
TOBIAS KULANG: What we are doing is just an effort to strengthen law and order on the ground and create a safe environment for tourism. Mt Wilhelm sits 4,600 metres above sea-level and it is probably the second most visited tourism item in the country after Kokoda track. So we had a very nasty experience at Black Cat, one the popular world war two tracks, so what we are trying to do, under our plan to promote Mt Wilhelm as a tourism destination, we are looking at law and order and infrastructure. So we have invested heavily in the infrastructure and we also invest in the law and order. So the tourism police concept - we have graduated 92 community and police personnel. We are going to post five men per five kilometres then what's going to happen is we are going to give them mobile phones and publish GPS positions on the internet and things like that.
AMELIA LANGFORD: So, that means tourists can feel safe from attacks?
TK: Yes, yes, yes. At the same time, this particular programme will also address problems like marijuana cultivation and consumption, home brew and illegal alcohol brewing and consumption and things like that.
AL: So you are taking a proactive approach here to help tourists feel safe - have there been problems already or this is just to prevent future problems?
TK: So far, we have not had any problems, any major problems, like holdup, or rape, or robbery, or anything like the scale that we experienced down at Black Cat but you never know so we need to be proactive.
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