LET'S just call it as it is. Provided the local members of parliament keep supporting the prime minister and his government, the District Services Improvement Program (DSIP funds keep coming.
They have become slush money local members can use as they wish.
DSIP program has the dual purpose of ensuring those who support the government are financially rewarded and providing a re-election fund for these members.
Feedback from the kunai roots is that, at each level of the DSIP financial food chain, everyone involved takes a large cut out of any funds that trickle down.
By the time some of these funds actually reach the local level, ineffective management and malfeasance disposes of the residue before anything positive is achieved.
Why would anyone really be surprised at this? The system has been intentionally set up by those in power to reward the loyal and thus presents a continuing example of how things in PNG should be run.
Why has this been allowed to happen? Yesterday’s article, Politicising drought relief in Papua New Guinea, explains with great clarity that those who are marginalised by the political process in PNG don't have any say at all.
So let's call a spade a spade. Papua New Guinea is not democracy. It is autocracy trying to make its way to dictatorship.
And, in providing over half a billion dollars a year of aid to PNG, the Australian government is apparently happy to both formally recognise and assist in the formation of an autocratic dictatorship imposed on our neighbours next door.