27 Nov 2006

Tonu gunfight the result of people's frustrations over money scam says Bougainville acting president

7:35 pm on 27 November 2006

The acting president of the Autonomous Bougainville Government in Papua New Guinea says last week's deadly shootout near Tonu reflects the frustration of people over the presence of the money scam operator Noah Musingku.

The Tonu fight, spearheaded by a group called the Buin Freedom fighters, saw Mr Musingku's base attacked, with reports four of his bodyguards as well as one of the attackers were killed.

Joseph Watawi says that the raid was carried by a group of normal people in the province who are fed up with the hold that Mr Musingku's U-Vistract scam has on life in the area.

But he denies suggestions the ABG sanctioned the fight saying it always maintains a peaceful approach.

"The government has not sanctioned any operation in relation to this incident in Tonu. However what has happened over there is actually a demonstration of the people being frustrated over the manner in which the U-Vistract faction has in fact restricted a lot of basic government services to get in to the people down in South Bougainville."