Indigenous treaties worth all the problems
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On election violence & unaccounted billions

Only seven of Papua New Guinea’s 65 government agencies have reported how they have spent billions of public funds provided to them in the budget since 2016

The Money Tree by Channell Arivai
The Money Tree (painting by Channell Arivai)


NOOSA - The delivery of a peaceful election is a shared responsibility that requires broad-based leadership, says Transparency International Papua New Guinea (TIPNG).

It says a free and fair election will require a concerted effort by the police, defence force, correctional service and some government agencies working alongside the electoral commission.

TIPNG said election-related violence was growing around our country, especially in the Highlands region.

It called on citizens to shun any candidate instigating violence and to give support to the work of law enforcement agencies.

There must be peace and good order during this critical time for our country,” said TIPNG chairman Peter Aitsi.

“It is the duty of respective agencies and the civil service at large to operate independently of politics at this time,” he said. “Their actions will assist reaffirm public confidence in the electoral process.

“The PNGEC needs to ensure it is communicating regularly with the public, providing consistent and accurate information so that citizens can be reassured that the elections are being effectively managed and properly conducted.

“These communications should also outline the processes for reporting complaints or issues of concern identified by citizens during the election.

“This will go a long way towards addressing misinformation during the election period, which if left unaddressed exacerbates the risk of election-related violence,” Aitsi said.

TI cover (Painting by Laben Sakale John)
Transparency International annual report cover (Painting by Laben Sakale John)

Meanwhile, in its Annual Report for 2021, TIPNG has put pressure on the government to improve its financial management.

“The majority of public bodies have failed to submit annual financial statements, as required under the Public Finance Act,” the report revealed. “Many have failed to provide reports for multiple years.

“Shockingly, only seven agencies have demonstrated some level of accountability since 2016.

“The rest of the 65 agencies have failed to report how they have spent billions of public funds provided to them via the budgetary process.

“This reflects a serious breakdown in financial management and represents a direct violation of the law.”


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Albert Schram

Here is what happens if you try to do things by the book in PNG. When I was Vice-Chancellor of the PNG University of Technology, in 2017 we were finally able to produce an annual report based on audited data. The process of getting audited data, however, directly led to my separation from the university.

In 2014, I started with internal audit after internal audit. We discovered 80 ghost employees on the payroll, and numerous other irregularities. Several employees were dismissed or faced disciplinary measure. What proved very effective was lowering the financial mandates for heads of departments, and finally starting to buy wholesale rather than retail. A lot of feathers were ruffled as cosy deals with wantoks fell through. In 2017, we finally managed to get a clean audit for the university accounts. See

At the end of 2017, the university council in "its wisdom" led by Chancellor Jean Kekedo and Council Sam Koim, accused me of financial mismanagement, and dusted off the ludicrous accusation from 2012 that I allegedly did not hold a doctorate, despite being cleared of this accusation by the official investigation led by the late Judge Mark Sevua.

At that point, I decided I had dealt with enough madness, and signed a separation agreement. Sadly some council members and the former Pro Chancellor Ralph Saulep were keen on revenge, see See My highly educated colleagues did not want to change the system to increase transparency and accountability. Several like corruption. We need to name and shame them since some like to present themselves as corruption fighters, while actually they fight corruption fighters.

Lindsay F Bond

Out out OUT
toss em OUT
do not doubt
toss em OUT
law they flout
toss em OUT
loss to snout
toss em OUT.

If as reported above, 'Commonwealth' is a word acquiring an unsavoury meaning within the governance of Papua New Guinea, with growth of tolerance for 'snout in the trough'.

If politicians have not the capacity to maintain truth and transparency, then toss out those politicians and find people who can.

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