REMEMBER HOW WE DRANK to the future and sang Papua New Guinea’s praises in 1975? Who has a view and a plan now?
I have. But after reading this piece, yupela ol lain autspoken intelektual but nogat nem [you group of outspoken intellectuals without names], try to restrain the vomit-like flow of anti-Australian abuse which would normally be your reaction to a posting by John Fowke the redneck ex-Masta.
Then tell the blog what, as an individual and as the member of an extended family and clan, you, an educated and opinionated and thinking citizen, are doing, actively, day by day, to try to influence the path your country may take in future which is obviously full of hazard generated from within its own political and empowered class.
Papua New Guinea’s “poorest” region, the resource rich Western Province, home to the multi billion kina Ok Tedi mine, ranks just above Zimbabwe but below the Democratic Republic of Congo in terms of human development.
This is according to new data unveiled by Deakin University’s expert in international development, Professor Mark McGillivray, at the recent PNG: Securing a Prosperous Future Conference.
“If PNG’s Western Province was a country there would be an international outcry about their plight, given its appalling low levels of human development,” McGillivray said.
Prof McGillivray’s analysis used the principles of the Human Development Index (HDI) to create a new measure which specifically looked at the districts and provinces in Papua New Guinea. This has not been done before.
The HDI “is well-known and widely used in research and policy circles,” Prof McGillivray explained. “It combines achievements in health, education and income and is primarily used to compare levels of human development between countries.
“The Human Development Index is typically applied at the level of countries, not to parts of countries. This means that it is blind to achievements and disparities within countries.
“When we apply the principles of the Index to provinces and districts within PNG, we find not only huge disparities but levels of human development that are extremely low by international standards.”
Prof McGillivray said, based on one version of the HDI, PNG is ranked 121 out of 137 countries, so down towards the bottom.
“Robert Mugabe’s Zimbabwe has the lowest level of human development and is ranked 137, at the very bottom,” Prof McGillivray said. “The conflict-affected Democratic Republic of Congo is ranked 136.
“Yet if the resource rich Western Province was a country it would be ranked in between Zimbabwe and Congo and as such among the three very poorest in the world in terms of human development.”
And that’s just the Western Province. What about my dear, poor old Gulf? What about populous but forgotten places like Gumine, Baiyer River, all of the Sepik apart from Wewak? Inland Morobe?
To say nothing of the outpatients department at the nations largest hospital at Taurama? What the hell is wrong?
If you don’t know, I’ll be pleased to give you a few clues.