APPROVED FOR RELEASE
The Imbonggu Cultural show has grown from its humble beginnings in 2019 to become a popular cultural attraction over the Independence weekends in Walume, the Imbonggu District headquarters. It is disappointing to announce that we have cancelled the 2022 Imbonggu Cultural Show due to timing factors and will resume again in 2023.
To bring to fruition a successful event like the Imbonggu Cultural Show deep in the Upper Highlands, it requires ample time for meticulous planning, preparations and fundraising but coming out freshly from a National General Election the Imbonngu Cultural Show Committee simply do not have enough time to execute all these activities as well as to mobilize the man power needed and tackle the massive logistical challenges that the show usually brings. We had no choice but to cancel the 2022 event and make early preparations to resume again in 2023.
The Southern Highlands Province has also experienced some violence during the recently completed National General Elections and there is still tension. Imbonggu is a very peaceful place but the timing is not right for any large gathering in Walume or anywhere else in the Southern Highlands Province for that matter. We have to protect the reputation of the Imbonngu Cultural Show and keep its brand exciting as any minor incidents at this time may taint it.
The Imbonggu Cultural Show which the National Cultural Commission commissioned in 2021 as a national cultural event has enjoyed success largely due to our organizers securing sponsorships from governments departments as well as private sector companies that have partnered with us to deliver a high-quality product in Imbonggu. I would like to thank them for supporting us in delivering the event colorfully in 2019 and 20211.
The cultural show has become a truly family event that brings people together from the Southern Highlands, the Highlands region and the rest of Papua New Guinea and this cancellation may affect plans that you all may have made to attend. So, I want to take this time to apologize for any inconveniences caused on behalf Imbonggu Cultural Show Organizing Committee to all the stakeholders of the Imbonggu Cultural Show who have attended or taken part since its inception.
We look forward to a bigger and better Imbonggu Cultural Show in 2023.
Hon. Pila Niningi, LLB, MP
Minister for Justice & Attorney General
& Member for Imbonggu