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15 September 2016

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Bob Diamond, from my intake, was the political education officer in the Western District and he trekked all over the place talking to people. It was quite strange because in some places he was talking to people about self-government and independence who had only had their first contact with the government a year or so beforehand.

Twas all rushed and was never going to end well. Australia was right and the UN and Foot were wrong.

Something that most writers of PNG political Constitutional history ignore in relation to the Momis Committee is that under its auspices there were set up throughout the Districts as they were then called Constitutional Discussion Groups which were under the management of the District Political Liaison? Officer. At the sub-district level were set up discussion sub-groups of people of similar education that were supervised by assistant district officers who ensured that the various topics which emanated from the Committee via the bowels of Konedobu got to the groups in an understandable format. It was a massive political education campaign - many old timers said we (The Gavamani) should not be involved because of that but we were. It was, I think a mixed success but it did give the Good and the Great at the time in Port Moresby/Konedobu and on the Committee an idea of what the real grass roots was thinking viz, that the highlanders did not want self-government and independence until they caught up with what they thought their coastal brothers and sisters had - development and education. It was the best organised and targeted programme that I have been involved with, has never been replicated and, as I said is rarely mentioned in any circles.

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