ENGA provincial police commander Martin Lakari is calling on Kandep parliamentarian Don Polye and his rival, Alfred Manase, to go back to the electorate and help police restore peace among their warring tribes.
“I call on all leaders of the district to help police restore peace,” Supt Lakari said.
The fight between the Akulya and Kambrip people of Kandep district started during the elections in July.
The fight reportedly started when suspects from Akulya, Manase’s tribe, allegedly hacked two Kambrips, Polye’s tribe, to death in Wabag town.
The fight was then taken to the village and surprise raids were conducted on the enemy tribes involved.
“During the fight they burnt down the million kina wheat factory in Murip village,” Lakari said.
He said thousands of kina worth of property that included permanent houses and vehicles were burnt.
He said women, children and other peace-loving people were displaced and now lived in fear.
“Only two deaths were officially recorded and not 30 or 40 deaths as reported in the media,” Lakari said.
“These are unnecessary speculations creating fear in people’s minds.”
Lakari said if people died or were injured they took them to the hospital and reported it police.
Lakari said he had sent 30 police task force officers from Wabag into the trouble zone on Aug 8.
“They (policemen) are negotiating peace. The fighting has slowed down,” Lakari said.
He warned the fighters to lay down their arms and make a commitment to peace, saying police would not be easy on them.
“I urge losing candidates to accept defeat and try the elections again in 2017,” Lakari said.