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Pacific news in brief

Tuesday 10 May 2022 | Written by RNZ | Published in Pacific Islands, Regional

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Pacific news in brief
PNG Kumuls coach Michael Marum, will be the facilities manager for the new High Performance Centre. Photo: Facebook/PNG Hunters/RNZ

Ex-coach seeks seat in PNG parliament, crackdown on price hikes on basic goods, and Fijiana to take on Canada.

From rugby league to Parliament?

Former PNG national rugby league and PNG Hunters coach Michael Marum has confirmed he is stepping away from coaching altogether to pursue a place in parliament.

He'll be standing in his home province of East New Britain as an independent.

Mr Marram said he's being backed by rugby league stars such as the Melbourne Storm's Justin Olam.

While he was mulling over whether to run for Parliament or not, Marum said he was wooed by various political parties, but in the end opted to go it alone.

Edict on PNG price controls

Papua New Guinea's pandemic controller has issued an edict placing price controls on certain basic goods.

David Manning has announced that businesses will not be able to increase the price of these goods by more than 10 percent for the life of the order, which at this stage is 90 days.

It applies to goods such as rice, flour, sugar, fresh fruit, baby formula, soap, hand sanitizer, RAT tests, tinned fish and meat, and noodles.

Any business breaching the edict is liable for a fine of up to K10,000 ($US2900).

First French Polynesia covid death for several weeks

Another person has died in French Polynesia's Covid-19 outbreak - the first pandemic-related fatality in weeks.

In the latest 72-hour reporting period, a further 20 Covid-19 cases have been recorded but the pandemic has eased.

There are now no more Covid-19 sufferers in hospital and the number of active cases is 44.

81 percent of those aged 12 and older have had two jabs of the vaccine.

The Samoan government has given a further 220,000 tālā ($US83,000) in it's efforts to eliminate violence against women and girls.

Eleven non-government organisations will receive 20,000 tālā each to further improve their prevention and response services to end domestic violence.

The Minister of Women, Community and Social Development, Leota Laki Lamositele, said although there have been many programmes and efforts to alleviate and address the issue, the number of reported cases continue to increase.

She said most incidents relate to domestic violence and intimate partner violence.

Last month the government signed an agreement for 500,000 tala with the Samoa Victims Support Group.

Airlines selling seats to Samoa

Air New Zealand and Fiji Airways have started selling seats on limited flights to Samoa in anticipation of the international borders opening in August.

Samoa's Prime Minister, Fiame Naomi Mata'afa, announced last week that returning Samoan citizens and valid permit holders would be allowed to travel to Samoa.

All travellers must be fully vaccinated and present a negative PCR Test or Rapid Antigen Test.

Fijiana to play Canada

The Fijiana rugby 15s side will host a test match against Canada in preparation for the upcoming Rugby World Cup.

Coach Senirusi Seruvakula said talks were underway to have the game in Fiji which would give them more game time.

It will be the Fijian's last match before the World Cup which is being held in New Zealand later in the year.