10 May 2007

PNG officials hail British prime time doco

3:46 pm on 10 May 2007

Papua New Guinea officials have welcomed the broadcast of a documentary series on British television which shows a group of PNG tribesmen visiting London.

The PNG High Commission says Return of the Tribe, on Channel Five, is an accurate and largely positive portrayal of their rural countrymen's attitudes to urban life in the developed world.

Ben Lowings reports from London.

"It's very rare for prime-time television here to cover Pacific Island culture, with the region mainly being used as a backdrop for 'Survivor'-style gameshows. This programme features six members of the Insect Tribe from the Sepik region, in awe at air travel, and puzzled at the stressful lifestyles of city workers. The troupe tremble at the prospect of going up in a giant ferris wheel in the city, the London Eye. But their spirits are cheered when they see a squirrel in a royal park, and try to hunt it down, for use in a head-dress. Their leader, Chief Joseph said St Paul's Cathedral could not have been built by man. But he is"

angered when not allowed to go into Buckingham Palace to meet the Queen, stating proudly he is a chief, and as such, also an important figure.