11 04 2013

In 1993 the PNG security forces came back to Arawa and started bombarding the nearby villages and bushes to scare BRAs away and villagers to come to care centres thinking they will have no way to run and hide. However, the opposite happened the villagers run further upthe mountains and lived in fear, but above all in peace and harmony with the nature. They cooked in the night to avoid the PNG security forces from seeing the fire smoke and launch a mortar or spray from a helicopter, which was mounted with M 60s machine guns.

I started writing songs of the struggle, strumming my guitar and many teens and old fellows alike in that time teamed up with me who had interest in music or could play the guitar etc. Charlie is a talented guitarist from Tavidua village near old Toniva Township and married to a girl from a village near mine. One Sunday we played some great tunes and from then on I did never see him again till his death.


Fortunately his name became a household name in the surrounding bush camps and as far as his area, because one day he and his younger brother somehow for reasons known only to them, decided to surrender to the security forces care centre in Arawa. While at the care centre for sometime the soldiers trusted them and above all by late Daniel who was the Resistance Force Commander from my area. Daniel was also the nephew of Charlie’s wifes father.

Daniel surrendered to the security forces earlier for reasons I don’t know even today and he was given 2 weeks training by the security forces to become the resistance force commander and have a bit of weapons knowledge etc. Coconut news around the bush camp was that he [Daniel] had been killed by the security forces. The coconut news became bullshit when one day Daniel armed to teeth led a platoon of soldiers to my village up the bush track.

We were in Arawa setting up an ambush in section 16 when Daniel and the soldiers from Kiriano based near Rumba SDA Mission went up to the village. They gave a heartbeat pain to one of my nephews Robert when they held him up. Robert saw Daniel, talked with him and he let him go free.


God only knows what would have happened if we were back home that night. Maybe they would have burned down the houses, a normal act carried out by the armed forces when we shot one of them. From then on we knew that Daniel was the Resistance force commander from our area.

With the family relationship and connection Daniel gave all the trust to Charlie and his brother, so every night they used to go to bed leaving Charlie and his brother in charge with M16 and the hundred rounds mini machine gun. When they came across this trust they told themselves that when they have the chance they would dash for freedom with the weapons.

One fine night they got that chance so they dashed for freedom with the two high-powered weapons something the BRAs had been trying to get hold of every chance they came across to defend their land and the people.

They fled up our bush camp hideouts, unfortunately not long after the hardcore BRAs took the weapons from them as usual. Only their names became famous. In Arawa Daniel was in trouble, the soldiers ordered him to bring back the guns or else he will be killed. He and some young guys from the area with just one-shot gun followed Charlie and his brother up the villages and bush camps. An old man from the bush camp was in the garden getting some food when he saw Daniel and the boys, upon returning to the bush camp he reported them to the BRAs.

News travelled fast so it reached the Kerei Valley BRAs couple of kilometres on the other side of the mountain. A section of the Kerei Valley BRAs came over and shot at the boys, the boys fled with no bullets wound but only minor injuries from sticks, stones etc. Daniel fled following another track and was unlucky when a lone Kerei BRA who followed his boys later came up that same track. When Daniel saw him, he begged for him not to shot him but the BRA guy pulled the trigger of his 5 rounds shot gun and shoot him through the tummy and left him there to die.

To him Daniel was a resistance force commander and on the enemy side who had been causing troubles in the area. Before Daniel died a lone BRA reached him, he was asking for water but it was far from any stream so he was pushing some bush leafs through the hole the bullet had made and apologized to the BRA guy for what he done when he was with the soldiers. He held the BRA’s hand and finally closed his eyes when death took him away, later people from the bush camps came and buried him near Daita village.

Talented musician and brave Charlie committed suicide from married problem later when peace returned back on the Island.




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