PNG, INDONESIA & AUSTRALIA IN TALKS TO INCREASE BORDER SURVEILLANCE
Re-post from TAKE BACK PNG | 31 March 2020
The National Government is in talks with the Australian and Indonesian Governments for a joint partnership in ensuring the international borders are policed, as the number of confirmed cases increases in the two countries which share borders with PNG.
Prime Minister James Marape told a media briefing yesterday that, he has told his counterparts to penalize Papua New Guineans who travel illegally to those countries.
He said vice versa, crossers from those countries will be arrested and charged for defying PNG’s State of emergency orders.
“I have already spoken to the Australian Prime Minister and sometimes tomorrow I will be talking to the President of Indonesia so our joint international borders will be given a step up protection on our side as well as on their side.
“So Papua New Guineans, as your Prime Minister I will be speaking without fear or favor, anyone of you who wish to cross to the other side, our government has made it illegal already, and if police on the other side pick you up and lock you don’t cry to our government asking for you to be bailed out.
“I will be asking Police, Customs and Immigration officials in Indonesia and Australia to also tighten up our borders both land and on sea or water,” said Marape.
PM DISCOURAGES AID BUT WANTS MORE TRADE FROM AUSSIE & NZ.
By Rose Amos – NBC News
Prime Minister James Marape says he is not encouraging more aid from Australia and New Zealand.
Marape instead said he requested the two countries to engage more Papua New Guineans in employment and increase their intake from PNG’s exports of its agricultural produce.
Australia is PNG’s biggest aid donor since Independence.
Marape boldly told reporters upon his return from New Zealand this week that time for aid is over and he will not ask.
But, he said if they wish to provide at their own will than that’s fine with PNG.
James Marape said this was part of his discussions when he met with the leaders of Australia and New Zealand recently.
”Why am re-configuring relationship with Australia and PNG is just not to go and ask them for aid.
“I told Australia when I was down there, am not going to ask for aid don’t give me aid, you give me employment and you buy my produce, that’s what I am here to tell you, am not going to ask for more aid now, time for aid is finished.
“I will stand on my own two feet and do business.
“You employ my Papua New Guineans who wish to work in your economy and you buy my produce just like I will employ yours and buy your products if need be so that’s the way we are.
“So we are shifting that in the future, no more asking for aid, but if they want to give we will not refuse but we will not ask.
“We will talk about trade and talk about employment as we relate with them going into the future, Marape stressed.
NBC News- Rose Amos