A charter to make our country a better place
27 July 2016
NOW the no confidence vote is over, I return to attending to my duties as a Governor.
I am not interested in pursuing the no confidence matter further because I have limited time and resources.
To those in opposition who wish to go on with this, you may be right but it may be impractical and costly. It is a cost I simply cannot afford.
The no confidence vote showed that the PM has the confidence of the elected leaders in parliament. For whatever reason, they choose to remain steadfast in their support.
The opposition needs to re-examine its strategies and with the business of keeping the government in check. However it must do so intelligently, strategically and responsibly.
I am in opposition, that is a fact, but I also support any positive efforts and any decisions by government that are for the people and for this country.
My anger and outrage and dissent and protestation will be directed at the policies and decisions that are not in the best interests of our people and PNG.
To the prime minister Peter O’Neill, congratulations on your win. You have the power to ultimately protect and promote PNG interests. Exercise it with caution and responsibility.
You have some good ministers, while others need replacing. Review that situation and do it as soon as possible. As for myself, I humbly ask that you review the following matters and attend to them as soon as practicable:
Consider stepping aside to focus on your court cases. Many possible candidates can temporarily replace you until you sort this out.
Reopen the academic year for UPNG and Unitech as soon as possible.
Loans and major decisions must come before parliament. You have the numbers anyhow but our constitution demands it.
Overpriced contracts. The CSTB [tenders board] is not functioning transparently and in PNG’s best interests with many suspicious contracts awarded under suspicious circumstances to suspicious entities. It is marginalising many genuine investors and killing off many PNG companies. The people grow bitter and angry at this situation and hold you responsible.
Exploitation of our forests and marine resources by dubious entities. Table the SABL commission of inquiry report and deal with the recommendations. Ban round log exports and force these companies to pay all their avoided taxes backdated with penalty. I am personally offering to help here for free.
Stop seabed mining. We do not need it. It is an evil effort and will be to our detriment.
Stop land grabbing and deport those involved immediately.
Tax. Only 30% of foreign companies and expatriate income earners pay tax today. Tax is avoided by companies in forestry, fisheries, real estate and consultancy as well as retail and wholesale.
Design and structure a PNG-centric tax system to give relief to PNG workers and companies and develop an aggressive modern tax regime that will ensure payment of taxes by all who earn an income and generate a profit especially those who currently avoid taxes.
Remove all taxes for retirement and resignation benefits for Papua New Guineans. Consider lowering company taxes to a reasonable rate. You will find more companies will be willing to pay and with a modern tax system you can maximise collections. Again I will help here for free.
Review free education and health. They are of such poor quality they are not doing justice to our people. The departments managing and administering are not effective and efficient and allow much leakage of funds and poor delivery of services leading to poor literacy, ignorance and a population at a disadvantage and unhealthy.
Agriculture and tourism must be given more attention and support with national strategies for creating agricultural and tourism hubs in PNG to enable our people to earn a living.
Our public service is outdated and ineffective for service delivery. It is too cumbersome and costly and is failing us. Good public servants are marginalised and civil servants are replaced by evil serpents.
All we wish to achieve can only be realised with an effective, efficient, transparent, lean, well paid, modern public service that is accountable and based on merit and performance.
Revamp and modernise our public service by implementing the recommendations in the report delivered by the Public Service Review Committee to modernise and corporatise our public service.
Table the Finance Inquiry Report and act on the recommendations.
Develop a national security policy and revamp our intelligence community to be a more effective tool in providing quality timely intelligence for decision making. I will also help here for free.
Modernise our Police, and Defence Force, Customs and Migration authorities so they are lean and effective and can deliver quality justice and protection of our citizens and our resources. Again I am available to assist for free.
Protect our jobs and businesses. Shut down and deport all those illegally operating in PNG. Labour and migration need to be out doing this now. Again I offer my contribution free.
Attend to the growing violence in our society, especially against women and children, and design strategies for awareness and education to counter, prevent and eradicate this horrible phenomenon.
Of course there are many areas of concern I have not listed but the foregoing are the issues I suspect concern our people most.
Finally, people of Papua New Guinea, this is our only home. Only we can truly make it the best possible home we want it to be.
This can be done if we all make the effort. If we refrain from such things as littering, loitering, negatively using resources, poor use of time …. if we can focus on positive efforts, cleanliness, productivity and responsible behaviour and respect for ourselves, others and the law.
We are only human, capable of mistakes, but also learning from them.
We can do it.
These are my humble thoughts. Criticism is always welcome but please make it positive.
This is the exemplary kind of leadership that PNG needs!
Posted by: John K Kamasua | 28 July 2016 at 02:43 PM
The problem with that analogy Bernard, is that there is another alternative you didn't mention and that many addicts often take, much to the chagrin of their families.
It's called 'the easy way out'. If you don't confront a problem all that happens is it gets bigger not smaller.
The longer the addiction is allowed to go for, the less chances there are for a turn around.
That's the problem in a nutshell for PNG. The more you borrow, the harder it is to repay. Who is going to hold today's decision makers responsible for tomorrow's debts however?
Posted by: Paul Oates | 27 July 2016 at 02:15 PM
Gary Juffa - Courageously well thought out and written indeed, as with all your dialogues in this difficult period of PNG's hopeful transition to good governance. God bless you and yours.
Posted by: William Dunlop | 27 July 2016 at 12:33 PM
In PNG, we have few members of parliament whom grassroots people could consider as national leaders.
None of the current members could ever burst onto the regional or international political stage. They have yet to speak on pertinent regional or international issues.
Most politicians seem to be there only to impress upon their wives, wantoks and a handful of tribesman. They don’t seem to care what happens to the rest of their electorates, province or nation let alone speak on or be concerned with regional or international human rights issues.
The points raised here by Hon Garry Juffa are national issues – issues if taken seriously and enforced could set the nation free and lead to economic prosperity - a democratic force to be envied in the Asia/Pacific region.
The people of Oro must ensure Garry Juffa returns in 2017 to team up with like-minded national leaders to correct and steer this country away from certain destruction.
Posted by: Daniel Kumbon | 27 July 2016 at 11:10 AM
A colleague stated that PNG is like a heroin addict. It has to hit absolute rock bottom before realising the current situation cannot continue.
Cultural change is often demotic, it must come from the people.
Posted by: Bernard Corden | 27 July 2016 at 09:19 AM
As Francis Nii mentions in another article you could include developing an infrastructure plan that identifies the key components, those requiring repair and those requiring development. Quite a few of the other items in the list, such as agriculture and tourism, would be reliant on having key infrastructure in place.
The list is, in fact, a manifesto of policies that a party could take to the election in 2017. It would also be a good basis for developing a public profile for the party coming up to the election. It could build and advertise a full-on campaign around those points.
Posted by: Philip Fitzpatrick | 27 July 2016 at 09:14 AM
Today, as much as at any time earlier, passengers are called upon to push their vehicle, no mud pun intended.
Congratulations Governor Gary, such a charter is exemplary for all MPs of PNG.
Posted by: Lindsay F Bond | 27 July 2016 at 07:06 AM