Attack On Journalist Should Be Condemned!

It has been known for a long time that there has been corrupt practices and scandals in the Papua New Guinea Department of Foreign Affairs. A series of report by the Post Courier has finally led the Secretary of the department to order an investigation into the scandals.

However, it seems those involved are panicking because their corrupt practises have been exposed and are now going to be caught. This week, groups of armed men attacked the home of the journalist. In-fact the reporter was attacked TWICE this week! The Post Courier also reported that the journalist also had a hand gun pointed to her head. And this was followed by armed men breaking into the compound where her family lives, calling out her name and looking for her. She had to escape through the back door with her baby!


Below is the editorial in the Post Courier regarding the attack on the journalist.


Editorial: Post Courier, 31st May 2007.


Violence against reporter condemned

THE raid by armed men on the home of a reporter from this newspaper on Tuesday night must be condemned in the strongest terms.

The attack, we believe, is in relation to the series of articles published in the newspaper about corrupt practices in government, including at the immigration and citizenship division of the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade.

The men involved were obviously under the direction of someone else to carry out the attack. It was an attempt to silence the reporter and the newspaper and stop us from publishing any more reports about the level of corruption that we have uncovered. Names of other members of the staff of this newspaper have also been mentioned as being targets of further attacks.

There is no doubt that our reports have uncovered a major corruption scandal that has thrived under a veil of secrecy for a long time and those behind it now want the messenger silenced.
Our reports have led to a major investigation being ordered by the Secretary for Foreign Affairs into the scandal. We pray for an outcome that will ensure corruption is weeded out of the immigration and citizenship division and that officers involved will be punished accordingly.

The attack and threats of attacks on our staff are further confirmation that those involved in corrupt schemes will go to any length to protect their corrupt dealings at the expense of the state and the people of Papua New Guinea.

Corruption is now well and truly entrenched in PNG society. It has compromised many sections of the civil service and is threatening the future prosperity of PNG. This newspaper has been the target of numerous threats over the years because we exposed the corrupt practices in various arms of government as well as certain groups in the private industry.

We are doing our job because that is what the people of this country want to know. We are not going to be silenced because a bunch of armed thugs are out to harm our staff. Corruption must be exposed and it is our duty to expose corruption wherever and whenever it is found. To stop now is to allow evil men and their evil schemes to prosper. No, we will not relent.

Corruption is eating away at the fabric of PNG society. Unless it is tackled head-on, it has the potential to destroy this country. We know some political parties have pledged to fight corruption if they get into government. We pray they do because the future of PNG is at stake.
Evil men with evil plans and intentions are ready to destroy PNG. We cannot allow them to do so.


About rodney itaki

Medical doctor and public health specialist from Papua New Guinea.
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