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Tuesday, July 25, 2006

Solomon Islands theology student stabbed in Mount Hagen City, PNG

Submitted by Arthur Wate

A Solomon Islands student at the Christian Leadership Training Centre (CLTC) in the Western Highlands Province of PNG was stabbed in an attempted day-light robbery by armed thugs in Mount Hagen city last Friday.

Daniel Siosi, in his mid 30s, of Malaita Province, was the latest victim in the city.
Siosi was being pursued in the streets into the Christian Bookshop where he was held up with a pistol and bush knives. In the ensuing scuffle, the father of three young kids was stabbed in the abdomen. He was rushed to the Mount Hagen general hospital where he underwent an immediate operation at the theatre that lasted for eight hours.
He is in a critical, but stable condition at the surgical ward.

Siosi is a South Seas Evangelical Church (SSEC) student at the college. He was sent there in 2002 and was due to graduate with a diploma in theology this year. SSEC Mission Coordinator Reverend Andrew Fanasia said yesterday church authorities were informed of the incident last Saturday.

“We were told his condition was stable. At this time, we are not doing anything practical other than just praying for his recovery. Our former president Rev Eric Takila was the vice president of CLTC so we are in touch with him in regards to Siosi’s condition. Unless anything further develops, the whole of SSEC in the Solomon Islands is praying for Daniel,” Rev. Fanasia said.

CLTC is one of the main training theological colleges for SSEC leaders and missionaries. Rev. Fanasia said the church currently has 10 students, with their families, studying at the college. Meanwhile, the administrator of the CLTC, Ezekiel Ivihi has raised serious questions about the security of the public in Mount Hagen City. Mr Ivihi branded Mount Hagen as one of the dangerous cities where lives of visitors are constantly at great risk.

“What does this signal to us? Are we in control of the lawlessness in the city? Is our law and order intact?” a clearly frustrated Mr Ivihi asked. Mr Ivihi said his institution had many students from around the Pacific and it was a shame to see such an incident where an innocent student who had no money was attacked in broad daylight. He suggested the government should do something immediately as the country was heading towards disaster from the hands of armed thugs who have no respect for other people’s properties and lives.

Early this year an Agronomist with the Fresh Produce Development Company was stabbed in the chest in another similar incident when thugs tried to grab his lap top computer near the city’s main market. The city has recently experienced a surge on daylight robberies by gangs of armed bandits.

Source: Solomon Star


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