Post Courier [ May 30, 2006 ]
By Jessie Lapou
AMERICAN warplane B-17E that crash-landed on the swamps of Northern Province is sitting safely at the Lae Bismark Maritime Wharf as of yesterday.
The plane was to be shipped to the United States of America but government had intervened and put a stop on the shipment pending Public Accounts Committee inquiry on July 1.
Internal Revenue Commission will not issue any export permit pending the inquiry.
PAC is responsible for protecting public funds and state properties.
The plane was allowed to leave the country under an agreement signed in 1999 between the Military Aircraft Restoration Corporation in the United States of America and the custodian of the aircraft, the National Museum and Art Gallery.
This has permitted American Alfred Hagen and Australian Robert Greinert to remove the plane early this month from the Agiambo Swamps in Oro Province where it had crash-landed 64 years ago.
Public are concerned to keep a close eye on the plane just incase the two expatriates sneak it out ofthe country.
Meanwhile, member for Rigo Anderson Vele said it was a “greedy decision” by the museum board of trustees and its management to have the plane salvaged and restored overseas when it should be left where it was where it would be used to promote toursim.
Mr Vele said investigations should be aimed at disciplining those responsible for the decision.