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Is PNG culture relevant in modern diplomacy and foreign policy?

Beware the Papuan magani jumping syndrome - it sucks

What governments don't wantDAVID EPHRAIM

PAPUA New Guinea has a cultural problem which I’ll call the ‘Papuan Magani Jumping Syndrome’

From the prime minister himself to his ministers, advisors, bureaucrats, media, business, churches, lawyers, police and military. The people too.

People like to jump when there is cash dished out.

Bribery and exploitation of power, vested and mandated, is not new. Some of these old dogs working for O’Neill used to work for Somare. But under Somare many of them never benefited.

Within three years of O’Neill’s first term in office, you would be surprised at how many businesses have reached millions in government contracts.

Individuals who had no capacity in other positions get appointed to boards of directors of state own enterprises or events.

One thing PNG enjoyed under Somare’s regime was the fairness of district grants to all provinces.

And there was some sense of rule of law and stability which produced a budget surplus.

But since the overthrow of Somare, O’Neill has ruined this country by moving into a budget deficit, spending too much on unsustainable policies like free education and free health.

Nor has this government improved or strengthened governance or mechanisms of service delivery.

We all can agree that AusAID, or its successor, remains the core pillar of helping to keep this country progressing in those fundamental areas of health, education, law and order and other areas of need.

We are a failed country; beat your chest and say what you wanna say but the facts are out there on the streets and in the villages.

A failed country - where the leader does what he wants to do without any thought for the constitution, rule of law, fairness or transparency.

For those of you fooled to believe that the electoral process will fix everything, you should note that the last election in 2012 was a fraud. Votes cast in the Kandep electorate, for example, were as prolific as if PNG’s population was 20 million not seven.

Elections in such a climate as this, given corrupted governance by a political regime, will never result in progress in our country.

Courts will never solve our problems; elections will never solve our problems.

This is because the very people we want to remove are the ones passing legislation and appointing key people to protect them, not just now but into the future.

If you protest, it’s your right to protest, but remember no protest and petition in PNG has changed the course of the country.

The changes happened only because the politicians and faceless forces played the people to their advantage.

The Magani jumped, with cash in its hand.

You have another choice to make.

Ignore the Papuan Magani Jumping Syndrome.


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