Austrade should be partnering with PNG
Unfair criticism of Don Polye is petty politics

When the cat gets back, the mice get a whack


IF SIR PUKA Temu believed he had right (and the numbers) on his side when he defected from the National Alliance last week, abandoning his deputy PM’s post and his ministry, he must be wondering today why everything went so horribly wrong.

Sir Puka’s supporters have left him languishing in opposition and have rejoined the government, declaring their undying allegiance to Sir Michael Somare, especially if they get a ministry of their own.

As for the National Alliance itself, which just last weekend was confident it had a brand new leader in Don Polye – well, that idea went pear-shaped as well.

It’s one thing to plan creative moves when The Chief’s in Fiji playing the Grand Old Man of Pacific Politics. It’s another thing entirely to maintain the enthusiasm when he’s back home.

New deputy prime minister Polye’s announcement of new ministries when he suddenly found himself acting PM went down like a lead balloon with The Chief. Polye must have thought there were no telephones in Fiji.

Lifting the Trade and Immigration portfolios from Sam Abal, leaving him with Foreign Affairs and a largely empty in-tray, was a particularly insensitive move. Especially as Abal was in Suva with Somare. And on the phone.

This week the Chief moved quickly to restore Abal’s complete portfolio, leaving the new minister, the much-loved Moses Maladina, who thought he had Trade, out in the cold.

Polye himself had been unwise enough to grab Immigration. But he didn’t have time to put his tick on the first visa application before, rrrippp, back to Sam.

And now the National Alliance, which last week was looking more like the National Dalliance, has affirmed it does not want a leadership change or challenge or any other word beginning with ‘ch’ against Sir Michael … ever. It has declared undying support for him to remain Prime Minister until the 2012 general elections when he will retire of his own volition.

The MPs who defected from, and then defected back to, the National Alliance have a common message to explain their actions. No, they were not trying to pick winners, they were “misled to joint the opposition camp”.

Now they have been “welcomed back to work with the Prime Minister” who they “were not going to abandon in any way”. So that’s all right then.

“I want him [Sir Michael] to leave politics with dignity and not be left out in the cold — no way,” said their leader, Michael Ogio, who is by way of being Higher Education Minister, perhaps until a new portfolio can be found including the word ‘lower’.

When contacted by the media to be told he had lost Trade, the much-loved Maladina said he had spent two days working on the organisational structure of his new ministry and had not been informed of the decision to rescind the portfolio. The only good news was that he had not wasted his weekend putting names in boxes.

His new role, it is said, will be Minister Assisting the Prime Minister on Constitutional Matters. That should keep Mr Maladina’s feet firmly planted on the ground.


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Reginald Renagi

Yes, Barbara, you got it right there about PNG pollies. They are just a bunch of silly kids with only a handful of them having any real grey matter.

Sam Basil has guts but was clearly frustrated when he told the MPs on the government benches to eat Arthur's s--t as the recent parliamentary session came to an abrupt conclusion.

To avoid pandemonium in the house, the Speaker decided to adjourn matters to the November sitting when the budget will be passed.

In response, PM Somare came to his son's defence by threatening the Member for Bulolo that he will get him outside.

The PM was provoked into saying what he said. MP Sam Basil was equally frustrated at the Speaker's actions to defer the parliamentary session for fear of a successful vote of no-confidence against the PM and his widely perceived corrupt regime.

Both the PM and Member for Bulolo should apologise to each other and start afresh come the next session of parliament as they both did not mean what they said to each other on the spur of the moment.

The damage has already being done as what the PM said was reported around the world on many online media outlets.

Who said living in PNG was boring? Yes, we do live in interesting times - well that's PNG politics for you at this moment.

Joe Wasia

Why attack Mr Polye? We know he has the potential to lead PNG.

It is Sir Michael who will decide whether to hand over power to Polye. Not anyone else.

Can those puppets and self-centred people stop these attacks on Mr Polye,

Stop using his statement on the PM's post and announcement of ministerial portfolios to attack him. He is innocent.

Barbara Short

We seem to be dealing with a bunch of children! They are showing themselves up to be a bunch of self-seeking fools!
Where are the adults in PNG politics!

Tell us more about this Sam Basil who is willing to stand up for true justice.

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