TUMBY BAY - In light of revelations about money laundering in Australia and multi-million kina overseas investments by politicians, one can’t help wondering how they do it and how so many of them seem to get away with it.
Also of interest are the uncaring mentalities they must possess to drive them to deprive the people of such large amounts of money.
I’m no expert on corruption and I don’t fully appreciate the technical details of such blatant dishonesty but it appears to me that larceny on such a grand scale must involve complicity across a wide range of individuals and agencies.
This must include fellow politicians, public servants and lawyers, both within Papua New Guinea and in Australia.
Any politician contemplating such crimes and devising the crooked schemes required to carry them out must have to involve other individuals and agencies.
Curiously, on the rare occasions when one of them gets caught, you don’t hear much about the network that obviously supports them.
Presumably, while the odd unlucky and hapless politician might end up doing jail time, his cohorts and cronies survive to perpetuate their dishonest networks to benefit the next political punter.
Aside from financial opportunity, we know that the major motivators for people entering politics are ego, power and ideology. These are particularly apparent in politics in developed countries like Australia.
Ego, for instance, is a major motivator for politicians like Malcolm Turnbull and Donald Trump.
Power comes a close second in both these cases but ideology seems to lag well behind. No one really knows what either of these characters actually stands for.
Ideology also seems to be lacking among most of Papua New Guinea’s current crop of politicians. If you asked any of them to articulate what they stand for many of them wouldn’t be able to do it.
Of course, the general public and any interested observers know exactly what they stand for. They stand for themselves.
Apart from immediate electoral bribes, candidates contemplating running for parliament in Papua New Guinea rarely seem to consider what they can do for their people. Instead, they contemplate what they can do for themselves.
All they think about is the big salary and the opportunities to rort ministerial or provincial funds so they can buy a big house and flash car and the status they will bring. And maybe they think about purchasing a property in Queensland that is well out of reach and the sticky fingers of their wantoks.
In short, they see a corrupt system and contemplate the joys of winning a seat so they can thrust their snouts into a deep trough of bank transfers.
I can understand how difficult it is to do anything about it in Papua New Guinea, where almost everything in public life has been corrupted, but I cannot understand how the Australian agencies involved, right up to governmental level, can stand by and let it happen.
That they know what is going on is beyond doubt. If Blind Freddy can see it they must also be able to see it. They can’t possibly be so dumb, can they?
That they do nothing about it, and I don’t buy the ‘Papua New Guinea sovereignty’ crap they trot out, the only conclusion is that they are somehow complicit too.
Australia doesn’t want to rein in Peter O’Neill and his cronies, even though they know he is taking Papua New Guinea down a bad road.
Why don’t they?