Of course, the international coverage will not be as extensive as that given to Nelson Mandela, and I expect we’ll not be favoured with a fake sign language interpreter like the one at Mandela’s memorial, but all the slogans will be there: Grand Chief, Architect of Independence, Father of the Nation, Sana, Peacemaker.
Politely, no mention will be made of the shadow of financial misconduct hanging over him or of the shocking state of Papua New Guinea society.
There’s no wonder that at any hint of ill health he’s out of the country in a flash – anyone comparing the Wewak Hospital with Raffles Hospital in Singapore would not ask why.
Wewak is the town where Sir Michael has held political pre-eminence continually since Independence, but practically nothing has been done in maintaining the hospital since.
When he dies, he’ll be praised to the skies and the ceremonies will go on and on.
But I do think the world in the case of Mandela has gone somewhat too far in the praises and the various memorials conducted for him in the days after his death.
I’m not a great one for the cult of personality for the living or the dead. The great and not so great are only, in the final count human, and we all deserve to be judged dispassionately, and only objectively.