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PNG PM Marape Responds to Unitech Students Protest


PNG Prime Minister Hon. James Marape has reiterated that it is not compulsory for citizens to get COVID-19 vaccination, however, work place safety is also important. 

He said finding a balance to ensure people , jabbed and not jabbed, work in a safe environment is important .

PNG University of Technology students protesting on No Jab, No job policy. Photo by EMTV

He said this in response to reports of students at the University of Technology in Lae staging a peaceful protest march today in support of workers who have been affected by the ‘No Jab, No Job’ policy being implemented by companies in Lae.

PM Marape said he made the Government’s stance on this issue clear to workers of Lae International Hotel who met him last Friday. 

To check what is happening at work places under scrutiny, a team from the National Control Centre (NCC), led by Controller David Manning, will be in Lae tomorrow to meet Lae Chamber of Commerce and Industry and different employers to ascertain work place safety issues in accordance to ‘Niupla Pasin’.

“We need to know exactly what the work place issues are before we all jump to conclusions on this matter,” PM Marape said.

 “The Government has intervened to get NCC to look into employers accused of implementing the ‘No Jab, No Job’ policy.

“I can assure the students, employees and the public that we will find a balance between work place safety and individual’s right to choose not to be vaccinated.”

Meanwhile, PM Marape says he never walked away from the Lae International Hotel workers last Friday, as some people have been claiming. He said he answered questions, and then had to rush to catch a helicopter flight to West New Britain.

“I stepped out of my car to address the crowd at Lae International Hotel, and then had to rush off to catch the helicopter flight to West New Britain, given the weather conditions at the time,” PM Marape said.

“My full address to hotel staff was captured by Lae-based media.”

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