|Wednesday, 9 May 2012|
THE PNG Defence Force is under scrutiny due to reports of 30 armed soldiers vandalising and destroying property at two houses as part of a personal vendetta in 5 Mile Ridge in Port Moresby.
The National spoke to eyewitnesses to the incident which took place on Sunday morning but was only reported in the newspaper on Tuesday.
According to the report, the two houses along the Hubert Murray Highway were partly destroyed.
Household furniture and food gardens were wrecked and a car window was smashed.
The attack was believed to be a retaliation measure against local residents after a soldier was hit during an argument there the previous weekend.
Tom Kerari’s home was reportedly damaged in the attack.
He told the newspaper the soldiers arrived in five 10-seater vehicles and set upon the settlers at around 11am.
Kerari, an Eastern Highlander, reportedly said the attack stemmed from a family issue which got out of hand.
“Luckily, we all fled and no one was hurt in the attack,” he told the newspaper.
“The army is supposed to protect us, not turn against us.”
Other residents reportedly said the soldiers returned on Saturday afternoon to demand their colleague receive 10,000 kina of compensation and two pigs or they would “burn down more houses”.
National Capital District police operations chief Andy Bawa told the newspaper he was not aware of this incident, while PNGDF chief of staff Alois Tom Urr reportedly said the soldiers involved would be dealt with by police if the allegations were true.
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