Betel nut ban challenged

NATIONAL Capital District Governor Powes Parkop is becoming frustrated with the opposition to a crackdown on buai (betel nut) sellers.
Betel nut ban challenged Betel nut ban challenged Betel nut ban challenged Betel nut ban challenged Betel nut ban challenged

The NCD Commission board will "decide on the ban", he told The National, adding that there was "a political price to pay and I'm going to pay the price".

The city regulation under scrutiny concerns last year's ban on selling or chewing buai in public places.

"I've already had enough of all the excuses that people give: custom, sustain livelihood and so on," Parkop reportedly said of the opposition.

"These are just excuses that people give to abuse betel nuts, spit everywhere and take no responsibility.

"I'm fed up, the majority of our residents are fed up."

Parkop brought up that many well-educated people consume buai, which could perhaps suggest there is some high-level resistance to curbing the market.

"Many of these people are highly educated, some of them have two to three degrees, save kilim ol (they are very intelligent), but they do stupid things," Parkop reportedly said.

"It's not just stupid but it's unhygienic, ugly and it's not healthy."

The governor also discussed the thousands of reported tuberculosis cases in Port Moresby.

"Just on the health side, we have in the city now 5000 cases of TB and it's growing," Parkop reportedly said.

"This is a disease that was almost eradicated during the colonial times."

Prominent blogger and buai seller Martyn Namarong announced in September he was leaving Port Moresby to go back to Western Province.

"Many city residents will also note that lately there has been a major crackdown on buai sellers like me," he said on his blog at the time.

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