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By Claudia Tally in Port Moresby

After 36 hours of unrest, fear and anxiety, Port Moresby city woke up yesterday morning to a quiet start under the watchful eyes of the police and military personnel as tensions slowly faded.

Kicking off to a slow start, shops and business houses opened their doors to the public while a few buses and taxis took to the roads as workers, students and city dwellers gradually resumed their daily routines.

National Capital District (NCD) police issued a safety notice on social media urging city residents to report any suspicious activities to the Police Operations Centre hotline number.

City Manager Ravu Frank gave reassurances that efforts to restore normalcy in the city would continue as City Hall remained open for public business.

“The incident on Sunday was an isolated one and it is not affecting the city in any way,” he said.

“Police acted swiftly and the disciplined forces patrolled the city to give confidence to the people.

“From here on, we will look at ways of preventing them from reoccurring.

“NCDC also deployed our Reserve Police to monitor and provide additional security. I am hoping that the city’s business houses will be fully functional from tomorrow onwards.”

Parkop calls for peace
NCD Governor Powes Parkop also appealed for peace while noting that the people of the city could count on City Hall for leadership during tough times.

Papua New Guinea Defence Force troops out on the streets of the capital Port Moresby in support of the police
Papua New Guinea Defence Force troops out on the streets of the capital Port Moresby in support of the police to restore peace in the city following Sunday’s unrest near the general election counting centre in Waigani. Image: PNGDF

Yesterday, there were reports of commotions in very few places across the city, including at Gordon where many shops as well as the market remained closed.

While life returned to normal, public transport was also a main concern and according to NCD Public Motor Vehicles Association president Jack Waso, security must be provided for buses as well.

“Buses are out on the roads but the main concern for us is security if police can assist. Our safety too is also very important,” he said.

By yesterday afternoon fuel stations, which were closed earlier in the day, re-opened for business. Major malls and centres also opened their doors and more people were on the streets.

Claudia Tally is a PNG Post-Courier reporter. Republished with permission.

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