District Court, Mendi & Ialibu

SHP00

PNG's judicial system consists of Village Courts, District Courts and the National Court which is the superior trial court.  Magisterial Services (established by section 173(1) of Constitution of Papua New Guinea) administers the District Court system within PNG, and there are 57 District Court establishments across the nation staffed by 88 magistrates and more than 500 court support staff.

The District Court's key functional jurisdictions include:

  • Hearing of Civil matters (general civil and family court),
  • Hearing of Criminal cases (committal and summary),
  • Establishing Leadership and Administrative tribunals,
  • Hearing matters relating to Land (Local and Provincial Land Courts),
  • Conducting Village Court appeals and reviews,
  • Juvenile Criminal Court matters,
  • Pikinini (Civil) Court matters, and
  • Coroner’s Court

The District Court uses formal and informal approaches for settling grievances, particularly in the use of Alternative Dispute Resolution.

Magistrates can also make orders for a community work order to be undertaken by a defendant who has been found guilty.  Where mitigating factors outweigh the aggravating factors, the defendant may be placed on probation with conditions for community work and/or payment of compensation. 

Contact:

Mendi District Court

PO Box 102, Mendi.

Ph: 549 1141/1105,  Fax: 549 1151

Ialibu Court House

PO Box 254, Ialibu.

Ph: 540 1644, Fax: 540 1644


Village Courts, Southern Highlands Province


Village Courts are an essential part of PNG's formal court system.  They are established under the Village Courts Act 1989 and the Village Court Regulations 1973.  There are more than 1,500 Village Courts across the country, supported by over 15,000 officials, including 900 women.  Each Village Court has 4-5 Village Magistrates (appointed by the Minister for Justice as judicial officers), 3-4 Peace Officers, and 1 Clerk.  Over 90% of people living in PNG have access to a Village Court, which have the jurisdiction to settle local disputes and deal with minor crimes using customary conflict-resolution approaches wherever possible.

Village Courts are the largest provider of restorative justice services in PNG, and are authorised to do the following:
  • Mediate disputes between individuals, clans or communities.
  • Encourage parties in dispute to use local conflict resolution processes such as the "Local Chieftain System" or "Community of Elders".
  • Convene a Full Court Sitting (if mediation fails or the parties do not want to use mediation) or convene a Joint Court Sitting if the matter involves people from different Village Court areas.
  • Issue formal Preventive Orders to stop further harm, damage or fighting offences.
  • Deal with minor crimes through mediation or court sittings.  The primary goal is to achieve an outcome that is acceptable to all parties and, if this cannot be achieved, the Court can make decisions and make orders (eg. fine, compensation, restitution, work order, etc.)
  • Ensure that Village Court orders are obeyed under the Village Courts Act 1989.  If defendants fail to obey these orders, the Court can issue an Imprisonment Order which then needs to be endorsed by the District Court.
  • Refer a matter to a higher court for serious offences outside the jurisdiction of the Village Court Act and Regulations.
  • Refer a matter to another service provider (eg. Department of Community Development).

Contact:

Mr Isaac Meya

Provincial Village Courts Officer

Office of the Provincial Administrator

P.O.  Box 249, Southern Highlands

Ph: 5491332

Facsimile: 549 1165

 

Southern Highlands Province has 152 Village Courts


Probation, Parole & Juvenile Justice Services, Mendi


CBC is an agency within the Department of Justice & Attorney General.  CBC has offices in every province across PNG and it plays a central role in developing and implementing restorative justice programs throughout the country.  It provides members of the community with access to community justice services which include the provision of non-custodial rehabilitation programs for both adult and juvenile offenders.  This assists offenders to re-enter society as responsible, productive citizens.

CBC is responsible for:
  • Drafting and submitting Pre-Sentencing Reports and Means Assessment Reports to the National and District Courts in order to assist the courts on appropriate alternatives to prison sentences for convicted offenders.  These alternatives could include probation, community service, mediation, restitution, compensation, counselling, rehabilitation or other diversionary strategies aimed to divert offenders from further misconduct.
  • Drafting Pre-Parole Reports in consultation with Correctional Services and the Parole Board.
  • Establishing links with government agencies, businesses, and NGOs to arrange short-term work assignments for offenders under Court orders.
  • Supervising and counselling of adult and juvenile offenders on community-based Court orders, and also parolees bound by Parole Orders to do community work.
  • Providing Courts with reports on breaches of court orders.
  • Conducing inspection visits of juvenile detention and correctional facilities

Contact:

Senior Probation Officer

Probation, Parole & Juvenile Justice Services

Dept. Of Justice & Attorney General

Southern Highlands

PO Box 362, Mendi

Ph: 549 2632   |   Fax: 542 0155


Provincial Administration & Dept. for Community Development, SHP


The Provincial Administrations across PNG have Community Development Branches, which provide services on behalf of the Department of Community Development.  The Welfare Officers and Child Protection Officers employed by the Provincial Administration administer the provisions of a number of acts, including the Laukautim Pikinini Act, Deserted wife & Children Act, Marriage Act, National Youth Service Act, and National Council of Women Incorporation Act.

Provincial welfare, gender & child protection officers provide the following services to the public:
  • Investigation and reporting of cases of abuse or neglect involving family or children (including domestic violence)
  • Assist with juveniles in the Police lock-ups and negotiate for their removal from the cells where appropriate
  • Deal with adoption applications and birth registration
  • Monitor employment of children in the workforce
  • Conduct counselling and mediation on all issues affecting families (particularly in relation to family conflicts, child abuse, adultery, and sexual assault/harassment)
  • Inspections of Child-Minding Centres and early childhood development programs
  • Conduct awareness programs to communities and attend school board meetings
  • Provide referrals in relation to custody & maintenance, adultery cases, & adoption

Contact:

Community & Family Affairs Division

Southern Highlands Provincial Administration

PO Box 249, Mendi, SHP

Ph:  549 1672

 


Correctional Services, Southern Highlands Province


Established under the Correctional Services Act, Papua New Guinea Correctional Services is the government agency responsible for the custody, confinement and rehabilitation of offenders and prisoners.  It is also responsible for the effective administration of the agency.  CS is responsible for operating correctional institutions across all provinces in PNG.

CS provides the following rehabilitation programs in its correctional institutions:

  • Vocational training (literacy skills, training in basic building trades - carpentry, roofing, brick & stone laying, metalwork, electrical and plumbing - agricultural skills for oil palm, cocoa, coffee & rice farming as well as fishing)
  • Counseling, mentoring, conflict resolution and mediation
  • Awareness programs on gender respect, domestic violence, and the prevention & spread of HIV.
  • Prisoner review and recommendation for detainee placement on parole or release on license

Contact:

Correctional Services Head Office

P.O. Box 6889, Boroko, NCD

Ph: 323 1855/323 1978  |   Fax: 323 0407

Buiebi CIS  |  Ph: 275 5772  |  Fax: 275 5438


Catholic Church, Southern Highlands Province


The Catholic Church of Papua New Guinea is made up of 4 Archdioceses and 15 Dioceses in Vanimo, Altape, Wewak, Lae, Madang, Mt Hagen, Wabag, Mendi, Goroka, Kundiawa, Kavieng, Kimbe, Rabaul, Kerema, Daru, Aloutau, Berina, and Port Moresby.  The church runs numerous programs across PNG (regional contact details can be obtained by ringing the Port Moresby numbers below)

The church programs include:
  • Pastoral Service:  training, planning, monitoring & evaluation
  • Marriage Tribunal:  church marriage separations & related matters
  • Youth Ministry:  training
  • HIV:  awareness, testing, treatment & care
  • Drugs & Alcohol:  awareness & counselling
  • Family Life:  awareness, training & counselling
  • Social Apostolate:  skills training (sewing, cooking & handcrafts)
  • Remand & Rehabilitation Centres:  care, training & supervision
  • Women's Ministry:  all programs relating to family and gender issues
  • Family Services & Caritas:  counselling, skills training (literacy, farming, cooking, leadership, disaster relief, & integral human

Contact:

Mendi Diocese

Franciscan Sisters

Ph:  549 1595

HIV Office - FMI Sisters

Ph:  549 2385


Office of the Public Prosecutor, Mendi


The core function of the Office of the Public Prosecutor (OPP) is the prosecution of matters in the National Courts and criminal appeals in the Supreme Court across PNG.  The Public Prosecutor is empowered under the Constitution to control the exercise and performance of the prosecution function of the State.  As part of the conduct of prosecutions the OPP has contact with victims of crime. 

As part of its prosecution function the OPP provides an information and referral service to victims of crime whose matters are before the National and Supreme Courts.  This involves:

  • Liaison with victims of crime during the conduct of prosecutions in the superior courts.  Liaison with victims takes the form of referral to support services and provision of information as to the criminal justice process and court proceedings;
  • Support to victims during court proceedings; and
  • Assisting victims with preparation of Victim Impact Statements for presentation to the court at sentence hearings.

The OPP also makes submissions on behalf of the State as to the appropriate penalties that ought to be imposed by the superior courts following a conviction. 

Contact:

Ms. Sheila Luben

Office of the Public Prosecutor - Mendi

Southern Highlands Province

Ph – 709 05406 


Caritas Papua New Guinea – Mendi Catholic Diocese


Caritas PNG is an agency of the Catholic Bishops Conference (CBC) of PNG & Solomon Islands. They promote Integral Human Development of the grassroots citizens of PNG.The mission of Caritas PNG is to take active role in social justice, peace, ecology, and human development issues as part of the pastoral mission of the Church, promote Catholic Social Teaching, address injustice, inequalities, poverty and dependency which undermine human dignity, and be a voice for the poor and marginalized to build a better PNG. 

It has operates through main goals: Integral Human Development (IHD), Disaster & Relief Management, Helping the Poor and Marginalized, Research & Advocacy, Child Protection, Gender Equality, Ecological Stewardship & Care of God’s Creation, Democratic Governance.

  • Community mobilization and action program – Cooperative Society/Community Association formations and trainings).
  • Leadership training for Village Ward Councillors, Village Courts, and Peace Mediators, etc. Peace-building (conflict management, restorative justice, conflict mediation/)
  • Women’s empowerment (economic, leadership, personality)
  • Community leadership training.
  • Youth formation program for delinquent youths.
  • Male advocates for peace and development in communities.
  • Counselling services for victims of gender violence/sexual violence, and other forms of emotional restoration.

Contact:

Mr.Ian Aipet – Diocesan Caritas Coordinator

Mendi Catholic Diocese

P O Box 69, Mendi,  SHP

Ph:  549 1102  |  Fax: 549 1169  |  Mob: 7391 0902

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National Youth Development Authority – Mendi, Southern Highlands Province


The National Youth Development Authority is a government agency established to provide policy directives for the youth of PNG. It provides a framework for planning and program development for all agencies and organisations involved in youth development work. Inclusive in its policy area for stakeholders to develop and implement programs is Law Order and Justice with the objectives to promote, maintain safety, security and peace in communities.

  • Provide capacity building for stakeholders/program partners
  • Strengthen community policing programs at the Provincial, District and Ward level
  • Encourage community based peer leadership on crime prevention and restorative justice programs for young people
  • Educate young people on their Rights against abuse and violence
  • Indentify and market rehabilitation training programs
  • Establish partner with training and rehabilitation institutions
  • Maintain and monitor youth program/project

Contact:

James Tesim - Provincial Youth Officer

The Provincial Administrator Southern Highlands Provincial Administration

P.O.Box 249,MENDI,SHP  |  Mob: 7132 9856