“It is a sad fact that the Museum has been on a downhill slide for the last decade or more,” he said. “The people that were running it did not care about it and its functions. They were more interested in what they could get out of it, steal the money and some of the artifacts and sell them.
“They have no shame, no compassion for the customs and traditions of this country and its future generations. For a few kina, they allow the export of national treasures, irreplaceable artifacts that will never be made again”.
The minister responsible for the museum, Charles Abel, had earlier joined with Julius and the other board members to try to remedy this appalling situation.
It was a hard road. “At every step of the way, we have been blocked by the crooks and thieves both inside and outside the Museum,” Julius explained. “They use the legal system to tie the hands of honest people and they have succeeded in stopping us from appointing a decent director, to manage the NMAG”.
“We as trustees have been threatened with arrest, jail and all sorts of things, and this from very senior policemen,” he added.
It all looked pretty bleak but the board never gave up. “We will prevail. We have taken on the task and we aim to complete it” Julius said last November.
And last week the Board achieved its aim and appointed a “good and honest man” as the new director.
Dr Andrew Moutu is from a village located on the mountains along the west coast of Wewak and received his education at the University of Papua New Guinea and completed his Masters and PhD Degrees in Social Anthropology at Cambridge University.
For his doctorate, Andrew carried out field research in Kanganamun village on the Sepik River during which time he was also inducted into the men's initiation ritual.
PNG Attitude and its readers followed the drama at the museum last year with a mixture of incredulity, anger and disappointment.
However some stories have a happy ending.