MINE JANITOR HELPS COLLEAGUE BECAME A PNGDF SOLDIER

Retired Army Private and Bougainville war veteran Berldon Timah shares his story on how an elderly work colleague at Ok Tedi Mine helped him became a soldier in the PNG Defence Force.

Rtd Pte Berldon Timah fought alongside now PNG Opposition leader Belden Namah during the Bougainville crisis and restored peace to the once distraught region.

Many years ago, I was working as a cleaner at a power plant in a popular mine in PNG when I saw an advert for PNG Defence Force Recruitment. I have always loved to join the Army since childhood days, so I applied, submitted my form and was called for an entry test from Murray Barracks, Port Moresby.

I had to travel to Murray Barracks all the way from Western Province by sea. I have a distant uncle that was resident there then, I wrote a letter (no mobile telephone those days) to my uncle that I was coming to sit for an entry test at Murray Barracks and will love to stay in their house.

I didn't get a reply to my letter even as my departure date was soon approaching. I became so worried because I needed to go anyway. As I was talking to a colleague cleaner in the power plant concerning my fear of where to stay when I arrived, there was a elderly Awin man in his 40s who overheard us and in his broken english interjected that he knows someone right inside PNG Army recruiting office.

Who could he know there this person? Is it not a cleaner like myself, I unintentionally said it out to my self after hearing this. 

"Yangpla o, the commandant of the recruitment in army ya em bipo classmate na pren blo mi, nem blo em Capt David Nipo"

In his bad handwriting, he scribbled the recruitment officer's name on a piece of paper.

 "Just mention my name - poro blo yu long bipo long skul, na givim disla pepa".

I reluctantly collected the paper from him, not because I intended to make use of it but because I didn't want him to feel bad.

The next day I set out on this long journey by boat MV Obo Chief from Kiunga down to mouth of Fly river, after few days I arrived in Port Moresby the next day towards evening. I went straight to my uncle's house only to find out that they have relocated from that place and no one knows their new address. I was stranded and it was getting late.

Around after 3pm, I made up my mind to give the cleaner's contact a shot, I got to the gate of Murray Barracks and mentioned the name I was given. To my utmost surprise, everyone in that bit, recognized the name and one person was promptly tasked to take me to his office.

I gave the paper where the old cleaner wrote his name that of his friend to the receptionist who took it inside, on sighting the paper, the recruitment officer shouted from the office and followed the receptionist outside to take me in. "Where do you know Peroru? I answered to him "He's my colleague cleaner in the power plant we worked together Sir,"  

Where is he, how is he, hope he's doing well? This man was asking me many questions in an obvious excitement and curiosity. 

The look on his face confirmed to me that Peroru was his beloved friend. He asked me what I came to do in Murray Barracks and I said it was for the Army Entry Test. Wow!, okay do you have anywhere to sleep? No, Sir. He immediately called someone to take me to his house where officers residence were. Upon getting to the house I was lavishly entertained and motivated.

This man came later in the night and he woke me up for a few chats and went on touching tutorials for the next day entry test. After the test, he personally drove me to the office park and gave further instructions for the next day session.

After the next day, when I got back to where his office was, I began to look at Peroru with a different eyes, how on earth will this man know such a powerful person?

Needless to say that my name was number four on the excepted list out of 50 entrance when the results came out.

Friends, I put it to you today that relationship is a currency. Every man needs another man to move up and that man may be the neighbor you look down on, may be the taxi driver you so despise or even the house helper you think is a nobody today.

Relationship is a stream of income, everything in life actually reproduces on the basis of relationship. Those we know in life matters. Most of us are talented but we need a cup bearer that will tell King Pharaoh that there's a Joseph that can interpret dreams.

There are some heights you may never get to in life until someone tells someone about you. So shut the door of relationships gently, you may need to use it tomorrow.

As we enter a new year with a new beginning and promises, let us endeavour to take our relationships seriously, even if you meet online, don't look down on anyone. You never can tell which of the relationships is your own key to success. 

Sometimes those who crown kings don't usually look like kings. Good night & blessed Sunday night.

Comments

  1. Berldon thank you for sharing this magnificent story. I'm a lawyer by profession and I really enjoyed reading your piece and it's priceless. This narrative has given me a new perspective in life where we should treat everyone with respect irrespective of their color, creed, tribe, ethnicity, religion, sexuality and the list goes on. 2021 is a year of humanity for me personally and I will try to treat every other human equally with respect and gratitude. It's powerful when you say that Human relations and a "currency" worth more than gold because we all need each other one way or another. Thank you for sharing. I am greatly blessed

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  2. Thanks brother for sharing one's lesson in life. It is enlightening and reminding me to be cautious and to treat everyone with love and respect.

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  3. Met this fine young man when he was recruited as a HROfficer of one of the logging companies in Kerema, Gulf Province. He was actually on a mission to work and fund his school fees for his final year at UPNG. We met on a black of Meii Uaripi and I introduced him to one of my teacher friends who ended up getting married to her. They both became very successful business couple owning earth moving equipment and a civil works construction company

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  4. Met this fine young man when he was recruited as a HROfficer of one of the logging companies in Kerema, Gulf Province. He was actually on a mission to work and fund his school fees for his final year at UPNG. We met on a black of Meii Uaripi and I introduced him to one of my teacher friends who ended up getting married to her. They both became very successful business couple owning earth moving equipment and a civil works construction company

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  5. Met this fine young man when he was recruited as a HROfficer of one of the logging companies in Kerema, Gulf Province. He was actually on a mission to work and fund his school fees for his final year at UPNG. We met on a black of Meii Uaripi and I introduced him to one of my teacher friends who ended up getting married to her. They both became very successful business couple owning earth moving equipment and a civil works construction company

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  6. Very inspirational, never judge the book on it's cover but be humble and be patience when you meet and interact with people.

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  7. This is one of the best stories I have read in a long while. Thank you for sharing.

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  8. "Think not every man on his own things but every man also on the things of others". Another way of saying " Love others as you love yourself" or It is more Blessed to give than to receive.. These are Biblical truths. No man is an island...everyone depend on wanpela narapela so Esteem others more than yourself and Papa God will lift you up at his own timing because He seteth up one and down siteth another....so LOVE was the name of the game Mr. Peroru played out of his heart and mine... ..LOVE is a little word makes a lot of difference in peoples life including yours because GOD honors His WORD above his name. That's why DO NOT BE WEARY OF WELL DOING....ta GOD bless.

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  9. Very inspiring piece,
    Even the Highly respected Rt. Asked several times questions to find out the condition of the old man cleaner which highlights the significance of their relationships they've established.

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