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Outgoing PNG Defence Force Commander, Major-General on Friday passed on the baton to the new commander Mark Goina.

Prime Minister, James Marape has commended Toropo for his distinguished service to the country.

PM Marape made the commendation on Friday Feb 18 2022 at the official handover-takeover parade at Murray Barracks in Port Moresby where Maj-Gen Toropo passed on the sword to new PNGDF Commander Maj-Gen Mark Goina.

The Prime Minister described Maj-Gen Toropo as “the greatest soldier in the country”, as he alluded to an occasion in 1995, when Toropo quit a well-paying job in the private sector to return to the army.

“He (Toropo) chose to come back and serve in the ranks of the PNG Defence Force,” PM Marape said.

“I was with him on the night he made this call to come back and serve the PNG Defence Force.

“Someone put to him, ‘it is a lower salary than your current designation’, and he made mention that his love for the uniform ‘is greater than love for money’.

“That, Maj-Gen Toropo, is something I can’t take away from you.

“Your soldiers, who served under you, need to know that you had love of the PNGDF right down to the core of your DNA.

“Hence, you choose to come back and serve in the force, and rose to the top of this wonderful institution.

“You truly are a great soldier, great warrior and among the greatest who have served (as PNGDF Commander).

“You served eight years with total distinction.”

PM Marape told Maj-Gen Goina that his predecessors had served the country with “total distinction”.

“Their loyalty was to God, to the Queen, to the Constitution, to the Flag and to the women and men in their ranks,” he said.

“May this loyalty be found in you, for you yourself made you way up through the ranks.

“You will be leading this force into an important time in the nation’s history where challenges are great, scarcity of resources remain, but I ask you to lead your soldiers with the high dignity you have maintained thus far.

“Over the next four years, as you serve your term, our country will go past our Golden Jubilee – the 50 years when we celebrate the vibrancy of our democracy.

“Our democracy will not be what it is without key constitutional institutions like PNG Defence Force functioning efficiently, effectively, rising above petty interests, rising above corruption, rising above personal interests, rising to maintain dignity and decorum, order, civility and ensuring functionality.”

PM Marape said his Government would give its fully support to the PNGDF over the next four years so that it could help build the country for the better.

“There is great potential in this wonderful institution: 5000 men and women of talent in various discourses of life,” he said.

“Mr Commander, use them to the best of their ability for the service of their God, their Queen, their country, their people.”


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