Papua New Guinea
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A mother’s sacrifice to sustain her family

A mother of five from Lufa District in Eastern Highlands Province is one of those who keeps the Goroka main market filled with coconuts from Madang.

This is despite the challenges resulting from the dusty section of the Lae-Madang Highway between the junction of the Usino-Bundi road and the Kawar market where the sealed parts of the highway end.

Mamave Kofu, who started selling these coconuts since 2019, said vehicles normally get bogged within this section of the highway when it rains.

“Anything can happen at this section of the road,” she said.

“Armed hold-up’s do occur in the Usino section of the highway.

“Also, killings relating to cult practices is rife in Madang.

“I also pray and commit my journey to God every time I hire a truck to Madang to buy bags of coconut.”

Her expenses include K1200 to hire a truck and K800 for its fuel to get the coconuts from the Saugar area along the Bogia road in Madang.

She uses the proceeds to sustain their living in Goroka, with three of her children doing grade 10, one in grade six and another in grade four, while the eldest is taking care of the household duties at their block within te Hausik compound.

A dish of Highlands greens, especially the ferns and leaves of breadfruit trees, topped off with coconut cream is a rare delicacy among normal meals in the Highlands.

The current prices at the Goroka market for coconuts range between K1 and K3, depending on their sizes.

Meanwhile, big coconut trees can be seeing in Eastern Highlands, especially in Henganofi District and lower Bena Local Level Government area of Unggai-Bena District where the climate is hot.

They do bear fruits and are harvested for their juice only as the copra part does not form in them.