Last week we were visited by our local member of PNG’s national parliament. He flew into Menya and then condescended to our very village (not to see us white folks, to be clear.) We (white folks) all walked up the road five minutes to witness the event.
This is the “grandstand” they had constructed and decorated for the day.
We showed up late, and then waited for an hour or so. When the VIP finally arrived, one of the local religious groups led the procession.
They marched with such severity–as if their entrance to Heaven depended on it.
About a dozen folks in traditional Menyan garb proceeded as well.
In this next picture you can see the ladies donning traditional bark capes which are used as a rain cover, shade or a blanket. In the background you can see the modern upgrade.
The ceremony consisted of a number of short speeches which turned out to be different individuals representing separate groups and their askims. Each community asked for a sawmill among other things. Following that, our Parliament member spoke. He was adamant that he is not a criminal and if he did steal the money they say, then he will go to jail. Additionally he promised to fix the road so the Land Cruisers can drive in second gear. A very political day.