PORT MORESBY: As thousands of city residents gathered to celebrate Papua New Guinea's 48th Independence Anniversary in various venues across the city this weekend, the Amazing Port Moresby Independence Festival also provided a significant platform for Small Business Entrepreneurs (SMEs) to promote and market their arts, crafts, and other products at the SME stalls.
Some of these locally crafted products caught the attention of both locals and visitors due to their historical significance and quality.
One notable item was the historical clay pots, sold at the SME stalls on Ela Beach by women from Porebada village, a Motuan village in the city.
Boio Heni, one of the vendors, expressed her gratitude, saying, "We thank NCDC for organizing this significant event, allowing us to promote our products." She shared that her mother, at the age of 95, passed down the skills to reproduce these clay pots, reminiscent of those used during the famous Hiri Trade.
"Our people used them in the past during the Hiri Trade," she added.
Heni urged NCDC to host more major events, providing them the opportunity to showcase and sell their unique pots to both locals and tourists due to their historical importance.
These pots, which can be used for cooking, eating, and storing water, are priced between K50 to K100.
Judy Ijampi, who came from Goroka, Henganofi, in the Eastern Highlands province to participate, highlighted the quality and durability of her cane handwoven baskets from Lufa district.
She expressed her gratitude to Governor Parkop and NCDC for creating a platform for SMEs to expose their products and for ensuring a safe space.
The different types of cane handwoven baskets are available at prices ranging from K20 to K700. She also exports them overseas for international buyers.
She further praised the well-organized environment of the event, highlighting the tight security, presence of St. John Ambulance, and vigilant security personnel ensuring vendor well-being and preventing littering and security concerns.
Helen Hanema, a soldier's wife stationed at Murray Barracks, was encouraged to participate in the event to market her products.
She expressed her gratitude that the inaugural Festival of a Thousand Tribes was hosted at Murray Barracks, providing her and other women with a safe space to showcase their products and local dishes.
Hanema was pleased with the sales of her products and local dishes during the event.
Numerous other vendors participated at the SME stalls, which saw a bustling crowd of customers on Saturday.