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03 December 2010

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There is a simple fact in PNG which up to now seems to have been missed by AusAID; that is, if you want something done the only way to do it is to do it yourself. This is one reason why the old kiaps were effective.

It is no good giving someone else a bag of money, going away and expecting it to be done when you get back. It never happens. You have to stand over people and make sure they do exactly what you want.

This is no disparagement of PNG workers, it is a universal truth and, happily, there are exceptions to the rule.

AusAID should now be sacking all the consultants and administrators and looking to recruit good people used to operating on the ground and getting their boots muddy.

We kiaps used to get an annual boot allowance. Maybe someone should also be responsible for checking that homecoming AusAIDers have dirty boots.

What's a little mud on the carpet if they've made something good happen?

Ilya's story plus pics occupied a full page in Monday's Canberra Times magazine section.

Great to see some common sense coming into AusAID.

A program which Ms Copus-Cambell should consider as worthwhile is one which trains village women, especially from remote areas, in the basic skills of midwifery.

A program was highlighted on BBC World where women were trained as midwives and equipped with basic equipment to carry out births in a village environment. The cost of the kit was around K1,000 for each midwife.

After training the women returned to their villages to help village women during childbirth.

This program according to the BBC has been extremely successful in Africa, India and Bangladesh. May be some one could contact the BBC for further Info.

Wakai wei dre ambai!

AusAID - We want more kiaps in the districts. The PNG government system is not working, it is only serving those in it.

AusAID money must be spent through tourism infrastructure development in the villages and communities, not in Waigani.

Proof that even dinosaurs can be re-trained if the will is there.

This is absolutely fantastic, and actually brings a glimmer of hope for a new direction from AusAID.

Congratulations, AusAID PNG; we look forward to much more of this grassroots involvement.

I do hope that the Australian teams are going to the Defence School of Languages at Laverton to learn Tok Pisin.

Open your mouth mother (opim maus mama).

I would like to look into your mouth (mi laik lukluk insait long maus bilong yu).

That's it (em nau).

Open wider (opim moa).

You look as if you have a rotten tooth (yu luk olsem yu gat tit i sting).

At long last some good news about AusAID. I am sure that such patrols will identify so many other areas that need this type of aid.

The patrol officer of days gonebye did so much to help isolated villages. Since Independence many of these comunities have been ignored.

Now isolated communities such as the Frieda River people are about to be forced fed with mine wastes and I wonder who is going to look out for their welfare? Certainly not the mining company.

Good one, AusAID. Continue to close down the air con (in more ways than one) offices in Port Moresby, and listen to the ex-kiaps who still have an abiding interest in the welfare and advancement of Papua New Guineans.

John Fowke, Terry Shelley, Paul Oates and many others are battle hardened, well known and highly regarded by Papua New Guineans.

They have the savvy to get results. Papua New Guineans trust them. I am sure some of them would be prepared to be involved in the design and delivery of aid projects. But the last time I checked, they did not have a PhD. Would that disqualify them ?

And what about encouraging small business in PNG? There is a very substantial amount of industrial clothing and protective equipment imported to PNG.

I suggest a scholarship be awarded to one of the indigenous clothing manufacturers to get the savvy on the standards required and become a fully certified manufacturer and provider.

And some help to present themselves to the mines and other consumers as a preferred supplier of certified clothing and protective equipment.

I find it hard to believe that the standard lime green or orange vest has to be made outside PNG.

Having been a constant critic of the direction of the AusAID program in the past, I have to be fair and acknowledge when they get it right.

This initiative appears to be several steps in the right direction of getting out of the air conditioning and into where the people actually live.

Have AusAID staff been reading PNG Attitude? If so, I wonder whether someone from that area might consider to return our approbation?

Who knows? We may even be able to forge a new partnership?

Phil - Right on, mate! And, secondly, I congratulate AusAID on this initiative. It's a pathway leading towards a number of positive possibilities and outcomes. This is really good stuff.

Hallelujah! Has AusAID finally worked it out?

And the comment about the kiap patrols is gratifying. Treating sick people with simply but efficacious medicines was one of the things that made the job worthwhile - a hell of a lot more satisfying than some retrospective gong.

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