Our clans lived together at Koi Nili, “the place where they sing”

by bzephyr

Part 5 in the continuing short history of the Goiniri Onnele people of Papua New Guinea as reported to me last week by Dominic Pusai…

The Goiniri Onnele people lived at Nongkripilru for only a few years before they moved again to the head waters of the Pien River at the confluence a creek called Kupen Rele. They relocated in order that a number of their clans could live together in a tighter community.

This place is called Koi Nili, which means “place where they sing.” This shift brought them close enough to hear the singing and drums from several other people groups in the chain of Onnele languages to the north and west. This was the original “Goiniri” village, and the alternate spelling probably derives from the pronunciation differences of these other Onnele languages. It is now known to outsiders as “Old Goiniri.”

The aid post was also moved to Koi Nili, and it served as a central location where the sick and injured from the surrounding areas could receive medical attention. People would visit the aid post from the related language groups of Wuguble, Kabore, Molmo, Inebu, Kaiye, Karantu, Romei, Barera, Wolwale and Nengian.

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