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155 posts from June 2014

Politicians fight for power while the best students die of poverty

Licini_Fr GeorgioGIORGIO LICINI | Catholic Reporter PNG

THE death of a third Divine Word University student in as many months in Madang yesterday is likely to send shockwaves around Papua New Guinea.

Terence Wafanu from the Green River District in Sandaun Province, a second year Rural Health student, reported withdrew from university in April due to the non-payment of fees.

Friends revealed at an improvised hauskrai on campus last night that Terence’s parents are subsistence farmers and Terence had been the first young person from an extremely remote area to reach university.

The cause of death has still to be officially determined but tuberculosis is the primary suspect.

After leaving university a couple of months ago, Terence never found his way back to the impoverished Vanimo forests.

Continue reading "Politicians fight for power while the best students die of poverty" »

Over 500 entries & 100 writers line up for Croc Prize 2014

_Croc Prize logoKEITH JACKSON

IT was quite a weekend in the Jackson office. The fag end of the Crocodile Prize national literary contest (entries close today) witnessed a torrent of creative writing pouring in through the email.

Many new writers made a first appearance, bringing the registered total to more than 100 with many yet to be processed.

The number of entries received will total well over 500 by the time this creative part of Papua New Guinea’s writing awards is done and dusted.

Now follows some weeks of judging and selecting which entries are good enough to be published in the annual Anthology.

Continue reading "Over 500 entries & 100 writers line up for Croc Prize 2014" »

Former patrol officer Barry Creedy dies in Sydney

WARREN READ | Ex-kiap website

BARRY Creedy passed away several minutes before 9am last Wednesday 25 June in the intensive care unit at Royal North Shore Hospital in Sydney. He was 74.

He succumbed to cancer, first of the oesophagus and then pancreas - both deadly forms of the disease. Chemotherapy worked for a while but in the end was insufficient.

I first met Barry when he took over from me at Komo Patrol Post in early 1963. Komo was restricted territory then - now it lands large cargo jets; what 50 years and oil discovery can achieve. Barry and I remained friends for over 50 years and were continually in touch.

Continue reading "Former patrol officer Barry Creedy dies in Sydney" »

Seeking advantage: PNG’s new trend of political nepotism

Election billboard (USAID)DAVID KASEI WAPAR

An entry in The Crocodile Prize
PNG Chamber of Mines & Petroleum
Award for Essays & Journalism

EVERY five years, we hear of new trends in election manipulation. Whether it’s selling and buying votes, the use of ghost names, various forms of threats and bribery and other foul play.

A new trend now seems to be in the making and it has reached certain parts of Papua New Guinea already. This new tendency is not so much election-oriented but more in the ‘nepotism’ category.

I guess it all started when the Somare government was overthrown in 2012 by the O’Neill-Namah regime.

Continue reading "Seeking advantage: PNG’s new trend of political nepotism" »

The Story of Lakes Yaundo and Pinde

Lakes Yaundo and PindeDAMBE KAWAGE

An entry in The Crocodile Prize
Buk bilong Pikinini
Award for Writing for Children

A long time ago lived an old couple in a village near the foot of Mt Wilhelm called Womatne. The man‘s name was Yaundo and his wife was called Pinde.

They lived together for many years but they did not have any children. They thought of having one but they could not.

Yaundo was the angry man in his village. When the village people gossiped about him and his wife, he fought them.

Everybody in the village hated him and his wife.  The people did not allow them  to take part in any of the village activities.

Continue reading "The Story of Lakes Yaundo and Pinde" »

When two tribes go to war

Peter Hanagipo (Alana Rosenbaum)ALANA ROSENBAUM | The Age

PETER Hanagipo (pictured) never asked his clansmen to avenge his beating. Driving home from the assault and bleeding from the mouth, he pointedly avoided his village, knowing that the sight of his injuries would rile the men.

But while he recuperated at home, rumours began to swirl and it took less than three hours for a small militia to rally on his behalf. In the mid afternoon of February 16, about 300 men set out from Koimufa 1, a village in PNG's eastern highlands, with an arsenal of bush knives, axes and slingshots.

They proceeded uphill, over the two-kilometre distance, and just before they reached their destination - the similarly named Koimufa 2 village - they splintered off into two groups.

Continue reading "When two tribes go to war" »

My adorable brother, Emmanuel Dunnen Are


An entry in The Crocodile Prize
PNG Chamber of Mines & Petroleum
Award for Essays & Journalism

‘I feel that writing about him is a wonderful way of honouring him and celebrating his life’

IT was a beautiful Wednesday night and quite peaceful at the hospital. His condition was listed as critical but stable. Although he was in a lot of pain, he tried to be strong as he always was.

Sitting next to him were his beloved cousin brother, mother, younger sisters, girlfriend and myself. We sat around him and assured him that everything is going to be alright, but it turned out the other way.

At age 21, he passed away at Goroka General Hospital at 8pm on 7 May 2014. It was painful to lose him to such devastating and unexpected circumstances. He died of chemical intoxication.

Continue reading "My adorable brother, Emmanuel Dunnen Are" »

Death of Bro Brendan Crowe, apostle of the Goilala students


BROTHER Brendan Crowe (de La Salle) died on Tuesday 10 June in Melbourne, Australia, aged 71. He spent many years in Papua New Guinea and leaves behind a great legacy of work, achievements and most importantly, friends.

One of his confreres said, “His loyalty, commitment, generosity, set purpose and dare we say devotion, could well be an allegory for his life both professional and religious.”

He was a true Aussie who enjoyed his football (North Melbourne), a beer with friends and stories. He was a religious of dedication and a man with a vision of what could be done, and great energy and determination to get it done.

In 1972 he came to Maino Hana High School in Bereina Diocese becoming involved in the Secondary Schools Community Extension Program bringing that dedication and commitment to all he did.

Continue reading "Death of Bro Brendan Crowe, apostle of the Goilala students" »



An entry in The Crocodile Prize
Kina Securities Award for Poetry

We sit and stare at each other
Seconds and minutes go by
My heart burdened, I watch her nervously
Her brown eyes stare directly at me
With grief deep inside
She awaits my word
And I await hers before I begin
But those sad eyes stare back at me

Continue reading "Gone" »

The problem I see with the Panguna women’s groups


FROM the 1960s until the early 1980s, women in Panguna were a silent population until, in 1987, the late Perpetua Seroro was elected as chairperson of the militant New Panguna Landowners Association (PLA) with her cousin, the late Francis Ona, as secretary.

Thus it may be noted that the first women’s voice in Panguna was the by-product of leadership militancy.

This occurrence, which became something of a trend, led to no tangible outcomes in post-crisis Panguna. Once this leadership was gone, there was no trace of it in the realm of community development.

Through those crisis years of 1990-97, women were vocal in church activities and affairs and moved into educational decision making.

Continue reading "The problem I see with the Panguna women’s groups" »

Soul Speak


An entry in The Crocodile Prize
Kina Securities Award for Poetry

My soul was awakened by the sound of your voice,
I responded to your call like I had no choice

and there as I gazed in your deep dark eyes,
I saw the answer to my own heart's lonesome cries...

My love I have waited my whole life for you,
in your arms time and space cease to be true

with you everything feels so right,
as natural as day comes after night.

Continue reading "Soul Speak" »

The 'lost generation' of Bougainville: the women speak up

Bougainville childSABINE ELVY | World Vision International

THE Autonomous Region of Bougainville seems like a true paradise: turquoise waters, palm trees and smiling faces. But this area has a troubled past.

Civil war waged in Bougainville for nearly 10 years in the 1990s displacing around 70,000 people and killing thousands. Over a decade later, the legacy of the war continues to leave its devastating impacts upon a new generation, including children born post-conflict.

Cecilia Naguo, 44, is a midwife from Buin District who knows that civil war costs more than just lives.

Continue reading "The 'lost generation' of Bougainville: the women speak up" »

Sam Koim, weak-kneed Aussie politicians & rumours of treason


ON Thursday, with anti-corruption protests in full swing in Papua New Guinea, Port Moresby’s rumour mill was running in overdrive and belching the smoke of conspiracy theories.

One of the most lurid of these was that Sam Koim, the sacked head of corruption-busting Task Force Sweep, was to be arrested on his return from Australia that day and charged with treason.

Mr Koim had been in Australia as a guest of Transparency International and during his trip he had meetings with senior Australian officials and foreign minister Julie Bishop and appeared on one of the country’s most influential current affairs television programs.

Bishop had subsequently issued a statement cautioning against political instability in PNG while totally ignoring the pernicious issue of high level corruption and the related sidelining of officials like Koim who were trying to do something about it.

Continue reading "Sam Koim, weak-kneed Aussie politicians & rumours of treason" »

Shadrach: RaitAPP whizz kid puts PNG on world stage

Shadrach proudly displays RaitAPP on his mobile. Inset - He demonstrates one of the features of RaitAPPBENNY GETENG

An entry in The Crocodile prize
PNG Chamber of Mines & Petroleum
Award for Essays & Journalism

LIFE is filled with inspiring stories of quiet and unsung geniuses and in Papua New Guinea one such person is the man behind the development of the new Telikom smart phone application, RaitAPP, launched recently and now on the local and world markets.

RaitAPP enables phone users to check their balance, bundles, top-ups and transfer credits, and displays transactions in both English and Pidgin.

Meet designer Shadrach Jaungere, 29 years of age and an android developer with Telikom PNG.

Continue reading "Shadrach: RaitAPP whizz kid puts PNG on world stage" »



An entry in The Crocodile Prize
Kina Securities Award for Poetry

I’m behind bars
Staring at the stars
you on my mind

I sit on the floor
Staring at the door
Hoping you will enter

I write your name
In the hall of fame
Engraving you in my heart

I listen to the wind outside
Peace and tranquillity subside
I miss you

Wiring up the Wantoks: PNG's own Silicon Valley

Raula KulaJEMIMA GARRETT | Pacific Beat | Radio Australia

INDIGENOUS entrepreneurs in Papua New Guinea have taken their first steps towards setting up their own version of Silicon Valley.

The move is part of a European-funded business cluster project also running in Samoa, Tonga and Vanuatu.

Douveri Henao is part of the PNG-based group, which focuses on information and communications technology businesses.

This week, Mr Henao and other young software engineers representing 25 PNG start-up companies gathered for their final conference at the end of a 10-week project.

Continue reading "Wiring up the Wantoks: PNG's own Silicon Valley" »

Your opportunity to support the PNG anti-corruption effort

Taskforce-sweepEFFREY DADEMO | Act Now PNG!

IN light of the recent political events, the sidelining of various senior police officers and more importantly the disbanding of anti-corruption Task Force Sweep, Papua New Guinea’s civic watchdog, ACT NOW PNG!, has drafted (below) an open letter to the prime minister and MPs.

This letter is one of many attempts already undertaken by PNG citizens and members of the international community to show support for the importance of the vital work of Task Force Sweep - and the need for this work to continue uninterrupted if the government is serious in addressing corruption in Papua New Guinea.

We're now inviting interested national and international organisations, as well as individual friends of PNG, to sign on before we attempt to get this letter published through various means with the aim of supporting the clean-up process by Sam Koim and team.

Continue reading "Your opportunity to support the PNG anti-corruption effort" »

Tell me something deep


An entry in The Crocodile Prize
Kina Securities Award for Poetry

Tell me something deep,
tell me something beautiful,
colour the world around us with your voice, every
tone its own shade.
Paint a picture with your words on the canvas of my heart.
Let me see all the things that your eyes share with your soul

The meaning of nationalism in post-colonial Papua New Guinea


An entry in The Crocodile Prize
PNG Chamber of Mines & Petroleum
Award for Essays & Journalism

WHAT does nationalism mean to the people of Papua New Guinea? In 1975, as PNG was about to attain its independence, there was excitement, anxiety and even confusion.

As Michael Somare was pushing for independence, many people opposed him in urban and rural areas alike.

As my father told once said, “We only heard from our teacher that a big celebration was going on in Port Moresby. I witnessed some of those experiences in my village and the surrounding communities.”

The word independence was new, unfamiliar and problematic for the people, and the experience was similar in many rural parts of PNG.

Continue reading "The meaning of nationalism in post-colonial Papua New Guinea" »



An entry in The Crocodile Prize
Kina Securities Award for Poetry

A poem dedicated to my mother. Imbia means mum and nai’ye means best friend

My Imbia!
Your beauty stands constant
Even when you wither through season
And your strength compared to none
When the sun rises in the east
And sets to bring nightfall
You work the field
And nurse our wounds
The heroes of tomorrow you carry in your womb
And the pride you give supersedes all fear
My Imbia, my Nai’ye
My Queen 

A nation of educated minds is a nation of gold


An entry in The Crocodile Prize
PNG Chamber of Mines & Petroleum
Award for Essays & Journalism

EDUCATION is like a seed sowed on the land that can become a valuable asset.

It is a process of someone acquiring valuable insights of something and the processes of gaining knowledge through the five senses.

How well and how much knowledge one acquires depends on the ability of the informant and the receiver.

Continue reading "A nation of educated minds is a nation of gold" »

Now Kranki Koim’s gone, Sweet Pete sets up Task Force Bleep


THERE was police-enforced singing and dancing in every town and village across Papua New Guinea tonight as word spread quickly that a much loved leader had set up a new anti-corruption body after the first anti-corruption body had accused him of corruption.

“It is only a temporary anti-corruption body because we don’t know how long we will want it for,” a spokespuppet for Mr O’Neill said.

“Probably until it does its job, which we’re hoping it won’t,” he added.

A senior bureaucrat close to a bank account provided more details to our reporter.

Continue reading "Now Kranki Koim’s gone, Sweet Pete sets up Task Force Bleep" »

Tapa & Tattoo Festival: A glimpse of the rich Oro culture

Tapa cloth and tattoos in Oro ProvinceEURALIA PAINE

An entry in The Crocodile Prize
Cleland Family Award for Heritage Writing

AT nightfall, a silvery moon slithers its way across the starry sky casting its glow over the ocean like diamonds on a sheet of glass. That’s when the maidens come out to dance the kere.

Dressed in tapa cloth, coconut shell armbands and scented leaves, their bodies glisten in the moonlight. The maidens have gathered on the beach to serenade young men.

Their seductive melodies waft through the night air accompanied by the swish-swish of the tapa. The kere beckons the young men to leave their fishing canoes, lay down their hunting spears and join the maidens on the beach for a playful rendezvous.

It is a dance I learnt as a school girl. It is a dance that was performed by the mothers and daughters of Killerton village at the inaugural Tapa & Tattoo Festival held in Popondetta, Oro Province in November last year.

The event was officially opened with the national anthem sung magnificently in the Orokaiva language by school children and the festival stage was set for a truly unique experience.

Oro Governor Gary Juffa did not mince words when he reminded the 4,000 or so people who gathered on the first morning that they were once proud warriors who should maintain their unique culture.

Continue reading "Tapa & Tattoo Festival: A glimpse of the rich Oro culture" »

University of Goroka takes up the fight against HIV/AIDS


THE killer Human Immune-deficiency Virus (HIV and Acquired Immuno-deficiency Virus (AIDS hit world stage in the early 1980s and countries developed different strategies to deal with the resultant epidemic facing them.

It has been recorded that HIV was first detected in PNG in 1987. The government introduced the HIV and AIDS Management and Prevention Act which reflected its commitment to HIV/AIDS proliferation in PNG. The Act also provides a basis for a multi-sectoral approach in addressing the HIV/AIDS epidemic.

Many state and non-state organisations have joined hands in developing workplace HIV/AIDS policies for employees, churches have taken on the challenge, international non-government organisations, civil society organisations and community based organisations have evolved to contribute their share of contribution to the fight against HIV/AIDS epidemic in PNG.

Continue reading "University of Goroka takes up the fight against HIV/AIDS" »

Australia warns that political instability is unhelpful for PNG

Sam Koim in CanberraAFP

AUSTRALIA has warned Papua New Guinea against political instability after the Pacific nation’s leader was accused of authorising millions of dollars in illegal payments.

PNG prime minister Peter O’Neill, who was elected in 2012, was last week served with an arrest warrant for alleged corruption and misuse of funds.

O’Neill, who denies the claims which he says are politically motivated, promptly sacked his attorney-general and dismissed the head of the nation’s anti-corruption taskforce, Sam Koim (pictured).

Australia’s foreign minister Julie Bishop said PNG was a “dear friend” of Australia as she warned against political instability.

Continue reading "Australia warns that political instability is unhelpful for PNG" »

From the Kundiawa News – 50 years ago today

Cartoon John Jones KN12KEITH JACKSON

The twelfth issue of the Kundiawa News appeared on 26 June 1964 and ran to 15 pages. The cover price was one shilling and, for the first time, subscription rates were advertised - at 10/6 a quarter including postage. Amongst the great amount of news, features and social and sports items, was the intelligence that His Excellency Herr Ritter, the German Ambassador to Australia, was expected in town. The newsletter’s voluntary staff had increased to seven including two outstation correspondents, Rick Hill at Gumine and Dick Broomhead, later to become a Qantas captain, at Chuave. And a hard-hitting columnist was appointed…..


Last Saturday week I accompanied a team of speleologists from Goroka and Kundiawa on a unique expedition deep inside the mountains to the north of the town. Under the leadership of Goroka club president Dave Cole 15 Goroka members spent three days exploring the caves – just a few of the thousands which riddle the limestone mountains throughout the highlands/

The Kundiawa party included Keith Buxton, Harry Lake, Steve Brady, Pauline O’Connor and Graham Breman. After what seemed an interminable walk, we finally reached the base camp in a large cave as the crow flies about three or four kilometres to the north of Kundiawa. The cave to be explored was one which the local people state extends two miles into the mountain and it was hoped that it would lead right through the mountain to an outlet on the other side.

Continue reading "From the Kundiawa News – 50 years ago today" »

The tears of an orphan


An entry in The Crocodile Prize
Buk bilong Pikini Award for Children’s Writing

“Do not judge others. God is our only judge”

WHEN Nehemiah’s parents died, uncle Billy and aunty Kaulasi adopted him. It was sad that they were barren and it was just unfair indeed that uncle Billy was blind and aunty Kaulasi had a deformed right hand. They were very poor, but were kind, wise and humble people.

Nehemiah’s clothes were ‘thrown away garbs’, that  he collected stuck between the stones in the river Pauhu, where he went goggle fishing .He dried them on the rocks and wore them for weeks, until the clothes rot and fell away.  

The village boys snickered past him when he held his uncle’s hand and guided him down to the river. When he carried firewood with his aunty, the boys rudely imitated ‘how his aunty walked,’ and laughed rudely.  They wrinkled their noses when he went to school in his tattered trousers. Henry and Joel always kicked his skinny legs, instead of the soccer ball. No matter, how badly everyone treated him; Nehemiah was always good natured, friendly, kind and honest.   

Continue reading "The tears of an orphan" »

We fight to uphold the rule of law without fear or favour

Sam Koim on 7.30SAM KOIM

I travelled to Australia at the invitation of Transparency International, whose global leaders are also in Australia at this time for the G20 Anti-Corruption meetings, to explain the domestic situation in PNG.

The impression the outside (international) community got was that what is happening in PNG is a domestic political situation as it was painted by our leaders.

Our leaders have branded law enforcement agencies like the courts, police etc as “politically compromised” as reported in international media including ABC.

That sends a wrong message to the international community and clearly undermines all the genuine efforts of all hardworking Papua New Guineans manning those institutions. 

Continue reading "We fight to uphold the rule of law without fear or favour" »

It’s a Hela’va time in PNG


LAST week was one of political upheaval in Papua New Guinea with confusion and news about the possibility of PNG Prime Minister Peter O’Neill being arrested, and his response in abolishing the Task Force Sweep, suspending senior police officials and reshuffling his cabinet.

Before adding my own perspective on these events, I want to recognise another event from last week, a tragedy which passed unremarked.

On Friday 20 June, another young man on Manus Island died as a result of the unruly behaviour of the PNG mobile police force sent to Manus Island to boost security for the Australian asylum seeker regional processing centre.

As residents of Manus Island mobilised to protest the mobile squad, a poet posted a tribute on Facebook – a mother’s lament. A young high school student set off to attend school like every other day and never returned home. He was hit by a police vehicle driven by members of the PNG mobile squad who were drunk. His friend was also hit but survived.

Continue reading "It’s a Hela’va time in PNG" »

The dynamics of community development: a fight for all of us

Community developmentJOHN KAUPA KAMASUA

AT university we were naïve enough to believe that if we did authentic and quality research, collected the right data and established the problem with the active participation of community members, then we were in a better position to take action. Effective planning would follow from there.

But after working in the development field for a while, it is clear to me that community development is a murky world of some success and even more failure.

With many failed community development projects, or should we call them experiments, one tends to wonder why development ventures that look straight ahead with good resource support do not always survive and become successful.

Continue reading "The dynamics of community development: a fight for all of us" »

Successful research & reporting workshop at DWU

Dr Jeannette Baird and Leionie BaptisteDAVID WAPAR | DWU Community Information Centre

THE PNG-Australia Alumni Association (PNGAAA) held a successful research analysis and report writing workshop for members of its Madang Chapter last Saturday.

The PNGAAA engaged experienced Australian academic and researcher, Dr Jeanette Baird from the PNG Office of Higher Education, to run the workshop for 30 participants at the Divine Word University (DWU) campus.

Dr Baird gave the participants useful insights into the art of research, how to analyse research data and write reports from it.

Several senior academics and experienced researchers from DWU were also on hand to assist in Dr Baird’s presentation. They included the President of the Madang Chapter of PNGAAA and Vice President (Research) of DWU, Associate Professor Maretta Kula-Semos, DWU Vice President (Academic) Professor Pamela Norman and DWU Associate Professor of Education Research, Dr Patricia Paraide.

Continue reading "Successful research & reporting workshop at DWU" »

Sir Paulias Matane recognised for lifetime contribution to PNG writing

Sir Paulias MataneKEITH JACKSON

THE Crocodile Prize Organising Group, COG, has announced that former Governor-General Sir Paulias Matane will receive this year’s Ok Tedi Mining Award for Lifetime Contribution to PNG Literature.

The award will be made on Thursday 18 September at the same time as five other awards for writing are presented during a ceremony at the Australian High Commission in Port Moresby.

Now aged 82 and with 44 books under his belt, Sir Paulias is the most prolific published writer in PNG. He is also a great advocate of books, learning and literature.

He was born in 1931, became a teacher and rose through the public service to become the eighth Governor-General of PNG. His memoir My Childhood in New Guinea has been on the school curriculum since the 1970s, and for many years he wrote a column in a national daily newspaper.

Continue reading "Sir Paulias Matane recognised for lifetime contribution to PNG writing" »

PNG a victim of flawed nurturing – an historical commentary

Kiap, luluais and tultulsMATHIAS KIN

An entry in The Crocodile Prize
PNG Chamber of Mines & Petroleum
Award for Essays & Journalism

PAPUA New Guineans today watch in awe as men fly through the heavens towards the stars. We envy nations of the world as they develop mighty economies and obtain great scientific, military, infrastructure, arts and sports achievements.

On a development spectrum, Japan is positioned at one end and PNG at the other. On the eve of our 39th celebration of independence, it seems that reaching Japan is impossible.

After nearly four decades of sovereignty, our skilled workforce is as good as that of any country and PNG has earned billions of kina from minerals, hydrocarbons, fishing, agriculture and forestry.

Continue reading "PNG a victim of flawed nurturing – an historical commentary" »

Peter O'Neill should step back to fix leadership in crisis

Canberra Times dinkusEDITORIAL | Canberra Times

AUSTRALIA is again looking on, more or less helplessly, at a political and constitutional crisis among one of its Pacific neighbours, friends and, in this particular case, former colonies.

Last week Papua New Guinea Prime Minister Peter O'Neill was served with a warrant requiring him to submit to questioning on official corruption charges, relating to a payment to lawyers said to have been authorised by him.

In the aftermath, the police commissioner and, apparently, an assistant commissioner were sacked by the O'Neill government, and replaced by another assistant commissioner, himself the subject of charges of perverting the course of justice. There is a a fresh Attorney-General sworn in after O'Neill dispensed with the services of another.

Continue reading "Peter O'Neill should step back to fix leadership in crisis" »

Parakagate: is Peter O’Neill behaving like a truthful man?


DOES Prime Minister Peter O’Neill’s unrelenting claim that he is free of any wrongdoing in the Parakagate saga hold any water?

He has resolutely defended himself against allegations since the matter surfaced as a result of last year’s massive investigation into the Finance Department by Task Force Sweep and in the face of recent forensic test results that affirmed his signature on the authorisation letter was not a forgery.

O’Neill is adamant that the signature on the letter of 24 June 2012 that authorized the payment of millions of state money to Paul Paraka is not his. He claims that someone else signed the letter.

Yesterday, in the face of potential arrest, he accused TFS, police and the judiciary of collusion and politicisation and alluded to a plot to overthrow him from power.

The critical question is whether Peter O’Neill is telling the truth to the people of PNG.

Continue reading "Parakagate: is Peter O’Neill behaving like a truthful man?" »

Papua New Guineans: Aspire to the ancient warrior code....

Gary Juffa and tribesmenGARY JUFFA

IN ancient times, warriors guarded their people with their lives.

They believed in defending and protecting what they believed in with their lives: their families, their land, their dignity and their honour.

Our cultural systems were such that tyranny was not entertained. No one who rose up and intimidated and oppressed would last long. Law was enforced. Justice was seen to be done.

We were never the brutal and unintelligent savages that those who wrote about us claimed we were.

Rather, we were noble, fearless, honourable and believed and promoted a way of life that ensured our survival for thousands of years, living in harmony with our environment, sharing and caring for one another and fiercely protecting what we believed in.

Continue reading "Papua New Guineans: Aspire to the ancient warrior code...." »

Unitech students will protest against O’Neill government


UNIVERSITY of Technology students will take a stand against the national government by staging a mass public protest in Lae this week.

Unitech Student Representative Council president Eddie Nagual (pictured) says he and his fellow students are ready to carry out public awareness to encourage for public participation.

“We want to move Lae city to get them to understand that what’s happening now in parliament is setting a bad precedent,” Mr Nagual said.

Continue reading "Unitech students will protest against O’Neill government" »

Bougainville civil war: The battle of Koromira Catholic Mission


PAPUA New Guinea’s motivation to re-take Bougainville in the civil war of the 1990s is and was economic.

The closure of the Panguna copper and gold mine by Bougainvilleans was hurting the PNG economy. And thus it went to war with Bougainvilleans.

But as the PNG military action continued, Bougainvilleans were learning the art of guerrilla warfare. And, from a historical perspective, the Battle of Koromira Catholic Mission was a significant Bougainville Revolutionary Army (BRA) success against PNG troops.

Koromira Catholic Mission was taken by PNG forces in 1996 as part of their task of flushing out the BRA from Central Bougainville, given the title Operation High Speed II.

Continue reading "Bougainville civil war: The battle of Koromira Catholic Mission" »

The everlasting pain


An entry in The Crocodile Prize
Kina Securities Award for Poetry

I wrote this poem while recuperating from the affliction of gouty arthritis and it is dedicated to all victims of this disease....

Ooooff…the pain is burning
It’s pulsating
It’s excruciating
It’s agonizing

The toe aches
The ankle aches
The knee aches
I can’t walk

The finger swells
The wrist swells
The elbow swells
I can’t hold

Continue reading "The everlasting pain" »

Horrified to see such betrayal says PNG Transparency head

Lawrenec StephensFREDDY MOU | PNG Loop

TRANSPARENCY International PNG is calling on all constitutional office holders to maintain the independence of their offices and to discharge their responsibilities in upholding and enforcing the law without fear or favour.

In a statement today TIPNG Chairman Lawrence Stephens (pictured) says the Community Coalition Against Corruption (CCAC) will be meeting tomorrow to discuss the issues happening with the Government and others.

“Task Force Sweep was created by government in 2012 to investigate grand corruption in the Department of National Planning and Monitoring.”

Continue reading "Horrified to see such betrayal says PNG Transparency head" »

Outpouring of public support for PNG corruption fighter Sam Koim


THE former chairman of Papua New Guinea’s corruption busting Investigative Task Force Sweep, who has apparently been dismissed after his investigations got too close to prime minister Peter O’Neill, this afternoon issued a Facebook message to his many supporters.

“Thank you all for your prayers and encouragement,” Mr Koim (pictured) wrote. “I do not intend my posts to be taken as expressions of my emotions nor seek your sympathy.

“I hope my posts are used as inspiration to face your own challenges. God bless you all.”

Meanwhile, O'Neill has accused Mr Basil of both being corrupt and responsible for a "major political plot" (see below).

At last count, in just a few hours nearly 800 Facebook users had ‘liked’ Mr Koim's brief post and many people had left comments for the investigator whose name is already a byword for courage, tenacity and public duty in PNG.

“God bless you too. Thanks for being a positive role model for many,” wrote Priscilla Kavana.

Continue reading "Outpouring of public support for PNG corruption fighter Sam Koim" »

The rapid unravelling of PNG's political stability

Liam CochraneLIAM COCHRANE | PNG Correspondent |
Australian Broadcasting Corporation

AT the start of last week, Papua New Guinea's often-volatile political landscape seemed relatively calm.

Prime minister's Peter O'Neill's coalition controlled around 100 votes in the 111-seat parliament and he was still riding high on the excitement of the first lucrative shipments of liquid natural gas to Asia.

Fast-forward a week and PNG's political scene is in turmoil, with the prime minister's attempts to dodge corruption allegations sinking him deeper into a legal and political quagmire.

While the streets are calm, the leadership of the police force remains uncertain and many Papua New Guineans are finding voice online to vent their disgust at allegations of the same old crooked deals that have long held PNG back.

Continue reading "The rapid unravelling of PNG's political stability" »

Gag-gauamo: The baby cleansing ritual of the Upper Simbu


An entry in The Crocodile Prize
Cleland Family Award for Heritage Writing

Gag-gauamo, or baby cleansing, in Kuman dialect, was one of many obligatory rituals performed on new born babies in the Upper Simbu and other parts of Simbu Province in pre-modern times.

Gag-gauamo was performed by elderly wometo prepare the infant for healthy and trouble-free growth into adulthood. It was the first ritual performed on a new born baby immediately after birth.

The ritual used the leaves of dodon, a waterside shrub with a soft, moist sponge-like leaf, and moro-kiglaua, a deep forest piper plant with huge ovate leaves that emit a cool, sweet menthol fragrance when pressed or squashed.

In the modern context, gag-gauamo can be likened to the modern day immunisation clinic conducted by the doctors and nurses in hospitals and health centres.

Continue reading "Gag-gauamo: The baby cleansing ritual of the Upper Simbu" »

Japanese PM Abe wants PNG to make investment easier

Japan's prime ministerial aircraftCLINT RICHARDS | The Diplomat | Extracts

JAPANESE prime minister Shinzo Abe will make a trip through Oceania, visiting Papua New Guinea, New Zealand and Australia, from Sunday 6 July.

The trip is likely to address three major Japanese concerns: energy, trade and defence are major pillars of Abe’s administration.

Mr Abe’s visit to PNG would be the first by a Japanese prime minister since 1985. PNG recently completed a $19 billion liquefied natural gas project, and its first shipment set sail for Japan late last month.

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The blues


An entry in The Crocodile Prize
Kina Securities Award for Poetry

Deep, deep sea
Is your colour blue
Can my eyes see     
When I look through
Is it really true
You are as blue      
As the sky above

High, high sky
Is your colour blue  
Can my eyes see   
Where your ends lie   
Is it really true    
You are as blue    
As the sea below