MORE than 10,000 people greeted the Electoral Boundaries Commission in Tari on Tuesday, waving placards and chanting we want Hela province.
As soon as the EBC team led by lawyer Philip Ame took up their seats on the stage at the Andaija Oval, the marchers composed of men, women and children surrounded them with a clear message that they want a province of their own.
One placard in bold letters read: We want Hela province! Give us Hela province!
Another read: Hela 300,000 people demand Hela province Hela had been waiting patiently for 30 years 1974-2004.
Enough is Enough No Hela province No PNG Gas Pipeline to Queensland Urgently report to National Parliament.
Outspoken Tari town mayor George Tagobe told the boundaries commission the people of Hela would not tolerate one more team from the National Government on study mission for a separate province, adding that there were enough studies and submissions done for Hela region to be declared a separate province and the people are frustrated at the long delay.
Mr Tagobe said the people of Hela are not crying for a separate province just because of the oil, gas, copper and other natural resources that are located in the region.
He said these resources are the properties of the National Government and would be shared equally with all the other provinces in the country.
He said that the call for the separate Hela province was first mentioned way-back in 1974 and long before the resources were discovered in the region.
Pioneer Koroba Kopiago MP Andrew Wabiria first called for a separate Hela province from the SHP when he put forward a motion on the floor of the House of Assembly in 1974.
Mr Tagobe warned the boundaries commission that the Hela people would not seat back and allow the PNG to Queensland Gas Pipeline project to go ahead if they do not get their province by the year 2007.
There would be bloodshed and the young generations of Hela are prepared to die for their gas if Hela province is not declared by 2007, Mr Tagobe said to the applause and cheers of the crowd.
He added that the people of Hela would boycott the 2007 National Elections if Hela province is not granted by the National Government before 2007.
Mr Tagobe told the boundaries commission that the Hela people are not negotiating for any new electorates, adding that once their cry for a separate province is granted, others would fall in line.
Team lader for the commission Philip Ame told the people that he agreed with their plight and cry for a separate province, adding it was a long overdue issue.
He said his commission was formed to gauze public views and opinions, adding he was impressed and would forward a special submission for the Hela province when the team compiles its final reports after all the tours are completed. Public servants from the region also gave their views.
GOVERNOR Hami Yawari has belittled himself by meddling with Hela province issue which is bigger than him. While we respect his opinion, it is sad to see him trying to push the rock that he cannot possibility lift.
He is against 300,000 Hela people. He is against the ruling National Alliance Party policy and majority of Southern Highlands people who are sympathetic with Hela people and their proposed Hela province. And in fact he is creating social and industry instability.
Hela means leave it alone or let it be, and untouchable. Therefore if Governor Yawari continues to touch the Hela issue he will be cursed and his resources development, his SHP and his people will be cursed. Therefore there is need for a united front condemnation of Hami Yawari and tell him to get out of the path of the Hela tsunami.
Hela province does not affect Governor Yawari in anyway - not his political leadership, his Kutubu Oil, SHP people, his K179 million provincial budget or even his Foi people of Kutubu. Only the Fasu people of Kutubu want to be part of Hela province, and only developed resources in Hela will be Moran and Hides projects will be part of the new province.
Mr Yawari should support a Hela province to make SHP a manageable size with the downsizing of huge population and geographical area. The national grants will be doubled to deliver services to the people.
It brings social, political and industry stability, equitable distribution of goods and services. Hela has qualifications to claim a separate province status, it has 300,000-plus population, and a huge geographic area.
Hela province will bring stability and unity in SHP and Hela. The stiff competition for top political and administrative powers between Hela and other ethnical groups in the province will cease.
I hope Governor Yawari will be humbled by these words and concentrate on improving his leadership and plans to manage proceeds from Kutubu, as well as live among his people, know and deal with their problems.
Fix your back yard before pointing your nose into somebody's affairs.
WHETHER Governor Yawari likes it or not, it is the avowed aim of Hela elite and 300,000-plus Hela will fight like a tiger to get what we want (The National, Jan 10).
So as long as Hela people live on this planet earth the fight for new province will go on.
I want to make this absolutely clear that in fact Mr Yawari doesn't know the Hela people, their grievances and wishes. He is saying all these nasty things because he has a puppet government without clear objectives to weed out law and order problems in his province.
If any authorities apart from Mr Yawari do not intervene soon enough, I predict that Hela region will become another Bougainville.
And the issue about separate Hela province is majority wish. Therefore, it is my appeal to all levels of government as well as investors to properly handle this issue. And if possible please go to Hela and have a close talk with the people.
PORT MORESBY, Papua New Guinea (The National, Feb. 15) I wonder how the immediate landowners living at the foot of Mount Gigira, the remote rural areas such as Nogoli, Handamanda, Juni/Julupalu, Palapala, Pupa Uli and Hanimu, are getting their long-term benefits from the giant Hides gas project.
The benefits in terms of business spin offs, education, health services and other valuable infrastructure.
How well off they must be is always a question people ask when they hear of these places being the host community of the gas project. However, it will be a total surprise to someone who goes there for a visit because hardly and definitely he cannot see any form of development initiative taken place in those isolated areas.
Once again, it is with regret and some sadness that I see none of this infrastructure has reached the real landowners of the project when in fact they deserve the best out of their precious God-given resources.
What is left for them to enjoy now is that on a fortnightly basis, the landowners (chiefs) are normally invited to a common BBQ place at a river side with their families to eat lamb flaps and get drunk - people other than the genuine landowners get the fattest portion of what has been ripped off their own hands. This has been an on going benefit the chiefs have been enjoying for the past 15 years.
Since inception of the project, British Petroleum (BP) as a developer and PNG Government as beneficiary had no vision to leave behind a better future of the community around the project area. No important strategies have been in place to improve living standards of the landowners.
Oil Search Ltd being another developer, when it took over British Petroleum operation in 2001, made no significant change to provide an ongoing support for wider community-based training programs ranging from health and nutrition through to small business development in the entire Hela region.
The developers all throughout the period of operation placed little emphasis on education as one strategy to improve living standards of the people. Over and above is the fact that the so-called Hides sponsorship scheme is proven ineffective and biased in its student selection process.
There are intolerant people in the scheme practicing nepotism that resulted in many landowner students not successful in their applications. This year many landowner students' applications were rejected leaving a considerable number of them stranded on the streets.
With the recent change of Hides student selection committee integrated to Kutubu, the Hides Sponsorship Scheme can no longer plays a significant role in supporting the landowner students. It has been arranged in such a way as to benefit only a few selected groups of people who are not landowner students.
Although entire community places great importance on education as one strategy to improve living standards, Oil Search Ltd has never supported this aim. What future then will be left behind for the immediate landowners, surrounding communities and Hela region to enjoy if the project closes?
The very people who are now known as chiefs, other gas districts and the people of Hela are owners of this important resource (gas) and yet it is sad to see that they are given only the crumbs on their own table.
Hence, with the much talked about Queensland gas pipeline project is just around the corner, the 300,000 people of Hela, including landowners of the project area, want to see fairness in terms of better education services, community health initiatives and other vital infrastructure taking place in their region.
Above all, it is their absolute desire that the much talked about new Hela province proposal must be approved involving all levels of government before 2007 because they have a strong conviction that without having this issue fixed they won't allow this important project to go ahead.
They first need to have a separate province of their own so that they can have a controlling mechanism in place over Hela finances as well as handle issues affecting Hela.
I am calling upon appropriate parties including developers of the project not to down play this issue but handle seriously before it gets out of hand.
The hot kaukau should not be on Yawari's plate because he is smaller than the hot kaukau (The National, Feb 10). The hot kaukau is now on Prime Minister Sir Michael Somare's plate and it's up to his conscience whether or not he takes it seriously.
I am agree with your idea because Hela people never look after the properties of the state. Many things gone missing, buildings burnt and lives are in fear so how are you going to manage bigger things? When are you going to change your boasting attitude?
Getting Hela province is big thing and everyone of us are proud of it, my question is are you going to manage the state properties when you get Hela province?
I am not pinpointing to people of Koroba, Komo, Margarima and Lake Kopiago but to Tari Town.
The People of Southern Highlands have lived peacefully over the decades and their long lasting ties have alway being the indentity of SHP.
However, in the recent past some politically motivated,power hungry & ego-centered people creatd the mentality of concentration campaign where they focused at the political supotters which led to the ignorance of other benefectors.
Seperation of Hela from the rest of SHP will only add fuel to the ethinical tensions especially interms of resource location and interrelationship for people along the boarder.
As Southern Highlanders we have to assess the possible aftermath should SHP be devided. Futhermore, in our presentation of views and statments we have to look at both pros and cons.
Remember, we SHP have PNG on the World map.
The government with it governing and decision making jurisdiction should handle the issues as so fragile because if worse come to worse.. am sorry but the ditch is too deep that our recovery wiii take ages.
Please Hela people lets just face reality here. The country is facing enough problems as it is and the last thing we need is another 'Bouganville' syndrome.
For once I think Hami is saying something right although he is a dumb idiot.
Dont get too excited cos it will never happen. Bunch of greedy individuals thinking about themselves..Whatever happened to 'One country, One People'!
They can have their province and start from the stone ages. The province is too big anyway. Quite frankly I dont understand what the fuss is about. The Helas should be part of Enga than Souths a long time ago. We have nothing in common except the rich natural resouces.
How on earth Hela or Tari wantoks are calling for a seperate province when they cannot manage themselves under the current arrangement like civilised kanakas.
Please put your house in order and STOP destroying down state properties - hausik, schools, bridges and terrosising the public servants. Unless you live and behave like human beings the govt will consider your request.
Otherwise the so called Hela province will be disaster and liability to PNG when there is clonic anarchy in you back yard. Also you terrorise PNGs wherever you move around in mobs.
I am not going to object to any comments in this forum but, in view of obtaining Hela Province thanks to the Natural resources, one should keep in mind that some things do come to an end and gas or oil is one of them.
I am not saying that the idea to get Hela Province was never mentioned at the start but, quite frankly, it won't solve the current problems in Tari and those areas.
I disagree with people about Helas as reckless nor am I denying anything because, if you are a Papua New Guinean, you are lying to your teeth.
If you asked me what I think about the people of hela claiming their own province, it makes me think about, well seriously nothing. It wouldn't hurt me a bit.
I mean, whats the point? Well, one might say, there are lot of Taris around. Damn right! I couldn't disagree! You walk down the row of shanty arrays of houses at Erima or patches at Hohola, it never crosses my mind, Taris are always there.
I am from Mendi but my mates introduce me as "man mendi-tari". Thats a wild generalisation but, nonetheless it makes sense.
They reckon there were a lot of good things that might come out of it. Then, I assume there must have been a lot of experimentation, research, and practicallities about a successful regime that must have be done somewhere.
Bougainville has just come out of a bitter love affair with the state and is still recuperating. Nah, mate! Tari is no way near Bougainville. Thats right, Taris show aggression to prove their point!
All that will be left is a fattening pig at the central offices in Port Moresby after the mindless, helpless and poor are wiped out.
This Hela province issue might take another decade to materialise when;
1. laws and order is a pending issue
2. attitude and respect for neighbours/state properties are seriously improved
3. the many Hela leaders with different manifesto are yet to come to a common ground.
4. squandering of public and resource(s) monies remain a skeptic.
5. possible wealth competition and corruption (among leaders) remain a fear/threat.
6. the ineffective mendi public service structure ripple a bad precedent
On a bigger platform these statutory bodies will have a say on the call for a separate province, not just NEC passing a colossal judgement;
1. Electoral Boundaries Commission
2. Inter-governments Ministry
3. Lands department
5. Public services Ministry
6. Public Services Commission
8. and probably the Police department.
First of all, PNG wants this particular area/electorate/zone to demonstrate (atleast for a while - till 2007) that you are capable of receiving a separate province. If the above points do not show any sign of improvement and you still barking on the side (thru media) for a quick province, this will not satisfy the NEC and it might take you another 10 years for a Hela Province.
To those Helas, patience is the staying power, demonstrate an undivided visible will-power to the nation and your determination and struggle can culminate with a great Hela Province.
Just about a month ago, Hammy Yawari was caught at the Brisbane International Airport by the customs officers for bringing in an equivalent of AU$15,000.00 which was more than the legal limit AU$10,000.00. I do not know the particulars of the charges that followed but I heard that they released him afterwards on grounds that he was a first time offender and gave him a warning notice ..
He was caught red-handed together with his Provincial Administrator, one of his wives and a couple of his brief case carriers. They purposely came for a shopping spree....... They deliberately brought cash because they do not have Credit Card. And they know that if the use credit card, it would be easy to trace their ruthless spendings and Mr Yawari would end up before the crimes and misconduct commission
He is definitely against the proposed Hela Province but the question is, does he know what the hell he is talking about when he is placing himself in a position such as this? I mean he simply does not have the brain power to understand that managing the financial and administrative affairs of SHP is beyond his intellectual capacity. So he should simply let it go rather than making a mess out of him self.
And further on this note, if there will ever be a window of opportunity for the people of Hela to gain administrative independence by declaring Hela Province, then, today is the only one and only chance!!
The time is right! The government is right! The Gas Project is on our side especially while the contractual agreements between the stake holders (the landowners, the National Government and the project developers) are yet to be effectively finalised! The people power has gained concrete momentum as never before! The government will do anything to deliver the Province especially when a united Hela force can use the Gas Project Agreement as collateral to gain Hela Province.
The National Government is legally obliged under contractual agreements with the Gas customers in Australia to honour their commitment with steady energy (gas) supply on time. And if the government fail to deliver their commitment, the Australian customers downstream will sue the PNG Government for failing to honour its commitment and subsequently loss of business revenue due to disrupted energy supply And this will be the worst case scenario for PNG with an ailing economy as the government will run into huge financial liability debts in hundreds of millions of dollars .This piece of information is the key to success for Hela Province !. Hela province now or no gas !!
We have suffered a lot over the reckless regimes of past and present government under Southern Highlands Provincial administration!! Enough is enough, its high time Hela should be recognised as a separate province !!!
As a fellow PNGean, I try to sense the sentivity of the issue at hand and in some ways as an outsider, I feel for what you see as answer to the problems you percieve in your province SHP. I come from a province which I too perhaps may feel isolated and deprived from services and recognitions as you, however, I wonder how it will be like to break off and be another province. May we do not have the kind of resources that you have so our becoming another province may not work well to our advantage.
However, I must ask you some questions... Is it really necessary that you have your own province? What is the main motivational factor here? Is it economical: oil/gas resources, political, administrational, triabl/ethnical or what is it? Would becoming a separate province solve all your problems or some or none? What feasibility studies has shown that becoming another province will be to your advantage or would studies show otherwise? Would becoming a separate province from SHP benefit SHP, PNG, only Hela or only you or all parties concern or none of the above? What are other ways of approaching your aspiration of becoming another province, instead of twisting the government's hand with the issue of gas? Is that the only way or it is only a short term route to getting you wish? Do you think its worth pursuing the whole thing? Do you have a timeframe for all these dreams and what mechanism are in place to achieve the goal or are you just using this forum to air your frustration over the existing SHP and its administration?
Perhaps, in some way you do have a point, however, I think while I feel for you and your dreams, I think its not late to exhaust every avenue to achieving what you see best for SHP, PNG and Hela, without resorting to making threats like 'no hela, no gas'. Ating em sampela liklik tingting na mi laik wishim yu support long dreaming high.
For some Hela brethrens who signal mixed reactions passing colossal confusion on the issue leaves much to be decided and only undermine your determination.
IF any of you will ever be infuriated to lament NO Hela No Gas than your agenda is completely thrown into bewilderment. Threatening the government or fighting a rightful battle? Great leaders fight to the death turning heads on the table, stay focused with Hela issue. It seems that some of you are mixed up with issues, so consumed to express vividly your push for a separate province. If Gas issue will ever be a shading effect on struggling for a separate province, than it sends throbbing indication that you are not on foot.
The Gas and Hela province are completely different and parallel issues affecting SHP. Gaining a province being your foremost struggle and gas being your right to mega bucks (royalty), the issue at end is Hela province, treat them separately as they are and seize the government by its neck.
I morally see your struggle as genuine and a prevailing effort but first, aim to shoot down the government that you are able to run a separate province. We have this entire Southern highlands crisis, (tribal fighting, mismanagement), remaining fresh and a concern for the govt. It is your legitimate push with overwhelming demographic backing, so let your struggle be a lucid drive.
But you cannot threaten to stand on the gas project platform to trade it for a province that is ironically weak to convince the government.
ONE thing is for sure; Hela will be a separate province either with or without Hami Yawari even if Lake Kutubu tsunami whitewashes out every Hela blood from the face of the Earth.
I challenge the governor to sponsor a referendum to find out the wishes of the Hela people.
The fight for self-determination and liberation started by Hon. Andrew Wabiria, then MP for Koroba Kopiago, 30 years ago and we will fight on until the end, passing on from generation to generation. Helas are not fighting to secede from PNG or autonomy as in Bougainville. The wishes of our forefather (Hela) must and will come to pass for Kigira Lai Tebo (burning fire, i.e. gas reserves), to light up Hela, Southern Highlands province and PNG with Helas at the helm to milk their remaining cash cow (gold and oil are gone) from a Hela province.
We do not need bloodshed and barrel of guns to barrel the oil and pipe the gas. We respect the resource developers and we will provide propitious investment climate provided we get our province.
Investors will be sadly affected at this time when economic indicators are surging and they cannot gamble with K6.8 billion which is even more than PNG's annual budget. Hela issue is not a political issue but rather a social and economic issue that needs all stake and equity holders in the Gas project to step in and pressure the politicians to grant Hela province. The message is clearer now than ever before. "No Province - No Gas Project". The Hela province and the K6.8 billion kina Gas Project are inseparable issues with Hela province being the prerequisite for piping the gas to either Idubada Petroleum Park or to Gladstone in Queensland.
I support Hela Gimbu Association president's (Mr Damien Arabagali) call for a public debate with Governor Yawari on the Hela issue to ascertain the merits of their respective views. If Yawari thinks he has the province under control, why is he always under heavy police escort each time he is in the province?
I challenge him to come to Tari and tell the Hela people of his views instead of being too vocal only when on Wasami Island and in Waigani.
It would also be interesting to hear on the outcome if a legal interpretation is sought by relevant authorities on the Speaker's ruling not to entertain other than Yawari on the floor of Parliament on Hela Issue. I wonder if this is a violation on freedom of expression as laid down in our Constitution, especially when mandated national leaders and even local MPs are denied the right to debate a national concern.
The issue is a time-bomb for the country and a deterrent for intending investors in the K6.8 billion Gas Project. I thank Chief Somare for living up to his 2002 election promise to Hela people by setting up the Electoral Boundaries Commission based on whose recommendation, Hela Province Committee, chaired by Hon. Sam Abel, one of our own Hela Opena sons is established. I also salute our two local MPs, Hon. Tomiape and Hon. Libe for standing by the plight of your people on the Hela issue and big cheers to Governor Wenge.
I want to respectfully remind our other Southern Highlanders that our province is too big in terms of land mass, population, tough geography resulting in ailing state of infrastructure, differing ethnic groupings and rise of warlords. Authorities are unable to act on the investigation reports, bogus claims, creation of jobs for cronies and cash hands. These continue to deteriorate the fabrics of once a peaceful province.
What is happening to the K200 million annual Government grants? We certainly have bottomless pits in Mendi and before it's too late, we must unite to divide the province into two manageable regions based on genealogy, ethnic groupings and cultural values and share the resources equitably and consequently, Waigani's grants will be doubled. Surely, we do not want people's revolution as a means to an end as in Bougainville.
Lets forget about the Gas and the Oil for a while.
The answer would be Simple..It has no internal Revenue of its OWN to begin with. Hela has not prove to Papua New Guinea that it could generate internal Revenue through means of "Doing Business" in Hela (with respect to other Helas who came out of Hela and do business).
So if you REMOVE gas,Oil, gold & Copper......... HELA is Nothing (due respect to its human resource, (sometimes its hard to tell, whether they are uni graduates or bush kanakas).
BTW, no "normal" businessmen (except for asians, of course) would like to do business in Tari.
My humble thoughts. Don't take it harshly...(though I know you will...and you will only swear... and wish to see me in person so that you could beat the **** out of me..Well one on one I can..but its rare you find an Hela fought alone.. Only in a mob and with Knives, of course.)
Our Brothers in the Hela area can fight to dead for three things. They are Land, Meri and Pig. Fighting to dead for a woman and Land is quite sensible and human, but fighting to dead for a murdered pig is quite primitive and our people from the Tari must start to change their mindset towards pigs. We the rest of PNGans would very much support them to have a seperate province if their cultural mentality mindset is changed.
Also if the Hela people want to get a seperate province they must pull down all the trenches and fences they built around their homes as protection from an enemy clan.
Though, hela area is reached in resources its exixtence is provided by the existence of SHP and PNG. The resource around Hela province is no way near Bougaiville Copper Mine where BCL was Upholding PNG on its own. PNG was created by the resource from BCL, whereas Hela and SHP were existing long before those resources were developed.
Skelim gut pastaim before your delusions of being the descendence of the Jewish People mis leads yu to causing something which will only be destructive to the people of Hela.
Finally, do not be deluded by the resources yu have.
If you dont know, I'll tell you, Hela is uniquie. In terms of culture and colourful dressings which attracts most of the tourist around the world, which cannot be compare with other PNG cultures. On top of this, Hela is blessed by Gas, Oil and more to be found. What else do you want? Its impossible. Yawari doesn't have anything in Nipa, that's why he is looking toward Hela.
MANY early Hela leaders like Andrew Waibiria, Joseph Ango and Ivan Homoko, William Eiya, Piko Akuane, Hogogo Minabe, Abu Meria, Pepe Homake and Ben Gayalu were moved by early independent movements like the Mataungan Association and the push for the decentralization of powers initiated by Bougainvilleans.
The splitting of New Britain, Eastern Highlands, Sepik and the Western Highlands happened in their presence in the 1970s in Port Moresby. They realized that what the Bougainvillans were fighting for was more autonomy and decision- making at the clan level. Discussions were initiated among the very few educated Hela then in Port Moresby for a Hela province.
Through Mr Wabira, the Hela cause reached the floors of the House of Assembly (now Parliament) in the form of a notice of motion on Sept 23, 1974.
The Waibiria motion almost became a lost cause in the hansard of the House of Assembly until Alfred Kaiabe shook 25 years of parliamentary dust in the year 2000. This, he did in consultation with the Hela Gimbu Association Incorporated, the official collective political voice of the Hela people on the Hela province and general resource development issues. Registered in 1985, the Hela Gimbu Association Inc. was one of the early decentralization movements from the highlands. The association represents 300,000 Hela people, and is the proponent of the Hela province.
When Joseph Ango left the army in the late 1960s, he went home to Tari and rallied support. He was supported by Ivan Homoko, William Eiya, and Henry Gayalu and the Hela Association was established. It became the Hela Gimbu Association Incorporated in 1985. x
The association was formed to push for a Hela province. An executive team was elected comprising Joseph Ango as the first president and, among other resolutions, the association resolved to push for a Hela province, and the agenda was set in motion.
After discussions and with the authority of the Hela Association, Mr Andrew Waibiria, then member for Koroba Lake Kopiago (1968-1977) sponsored a motion in the then House of Assembly for the creation of a Hela province. The terms of the motion were formulated in Hoyabia in Tari by Mathew Habe who was then a school inspector on June 16, 1974. Mr Waibira introduced that motion on Sept 23, 1974, which read: That in view of lack of development due to the size of the four districts - Western, Southern Highlands, Western Highlands and West Sepik districts - this House calls upon the government to:
n Appoint a special committee to investigate the administrative boundary aspects of the four districts;
n Take steps towards altering the boundaries of the four districts;
n Establish a new district including people living in Huri, Duna Hewa and others in the area deficient in development; and
n Give equal development to people in the districts to be established.
The notice of motion became the order of the day March 23, 1975.
The motion was supported by John Fifita, the member for Kula and Manasseeh Voeto, the member for Menyama, who was most vocal. He emphasized that Mr Waibiria was not asking for the abolishment of the current districts but out of them, another district for the Huri, Duna and Hewa, (the Hela) to be established. Unfortunately, further debate was deferred by a government motion by Hon Thomas Kavali. Debate never resumed and, two years later, Mr Waibira lost his seat to Paiale Elo in the 1977 general elections.
The issue at parliamentary level from then on became part of the House of Assembly hansard records and for 26 years collected dust.
Outside of Parliament awareness campaigns were held Hela-wide.
In 1976 a big rally was held in Tari to call on the government to grant a separate Hela province. The late Angoea Tadabe, then a law student at the University of Papua New Guinea, read out and presented a petition to the district manager on behalf of the Government. No feedback came.
At around the same time Ivan Homoko, Henry Gayalu and many other Hela leaders spearheaded a proposal to set up the Hele Development Corporation to be the business arm of the new Hela province.
In December 1977 the chief of the Hela Association, Joseph Ango, wrote and petitioned the then (and current) Prime Minister Sir Michael Somare for a separate Hela province.
On July 17, 1978, the Minister for Provincial Affairs in the interim Southern Highlands provincial government, Piko Aguane, wrote a letter to Sir Michael. The letter demanded a separate Hela province. It was cosigned by another Hela leader and tertiary student, Benn Mawi Mindira. Joseph Ango was again elected president of the Hela Association that year.
In 1981, the association sponsored a Hela elites meeting in Tari, coordinated by Mathew Habe.
At about the same time, the Hela students attending UPNG consulted with the Hela Association and broke ranks with the main Southern Highland Students Association. They formed the Hela Students Society (Association) in 1981. Henry Gayalu was elected first president.
In 1982, Alfred Kaiabe was elected president. The Hela agenda remained the societys main focus. In 1983, Ambu Sone was elected president. The fight ensued.
Please guys, do not mention Bougainville to justify your case because Bougainville Political ambition is a very clear cut issue which is uncomparable to that of Hela. Bougainville is culturally,geographically and enthically different from the rest, so please refrain from highlighting Bougainville to justify your political wishes.
Otherwise, good on you guys, keep up the fight coz you cant achieve anything if you do not make any noise.
A small region with many asociations - all representing Hela. Many leads disputing each other of truly representing Hela. One goes up in the media, another comes in and tear in down buldozing he is the true leader of the people, not those who based in POM. Yet another shows up the next day. Who is who and what are they fighting for when a province is let to materialize? Power? Fame? Money? These are celebrities yoga and what cripples growing nations with leadership catastrophe. None of Hela leaders have a common ground except that they are pushing for a separate province.
Convince the government or else i rephrase a former Unitech student leaders words here "unless we cooperate and show a united front (to the government), we are fighting a loosing battle"
The wantoks from Helaland won't get it until they behave like CIVILISED KANAKAS and stop terrorising people whenever they stamp their big feet on someone else land.
I wonder when are they going to stop fighting among themselves, destroying state properties, crying for unnecesarry or unrealistic compensation claims over minute things and be sensible/reasonable?
No way PNG will never support nor bless your cause because despite having vast natural resources in your land you simple CANNOT manage and have been a liability to the country. No sensible PNG politician would support your cause on the floor of parliament. Otherwise sut up and clean your filty backyard first.
If given a province, will you guys be able to take care of public properties? Your history is just crap and full of gabage. The citizens there do not care what the put a bullet on or strike a match on. They burn, slaughter, chop, amputate, rampage, destroy, fire.....the list goes on and on. How can we get the assurance that they will manage and take care of schools, bridges, hospitals, etc as a province? We need to educate these people for another decade or two before considering approval for a separate province. Over to you, Igiri.