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06 September 2018


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Hagen town was generally neat and clean in the seventies and eighties. And in the rural areas that I was familiar with in the Jimi and around Hagen, there were always bush toilets that were a bit rough but presentable. The ceremonial parks, of which there were many, were normally kept very clean and flowers were often to be seen planted around the borders of food gardens. Mondays were community work days when the people themselves took care of the public roads, repairing roads and managing any waste material. The Local Government Councillors usually ensured that their own clan members, - men and women – turned up to help. No payment was given for such work, it was simply the contribution of the local community to the upkeep of roads in their own area.
If the responsibility for waste management is removed from the local community, and the responsibility is given to a central authority, there must be some way of involving the local community in the whole process.

This sad picture paints the inevitable question of what's missing? The answer is motivation.

Surely there must be many accepting the public purse who are responsible for this mess yet the problem seems unsolvable. The answers are clearly spelt out in the article and everyone knows what has to be done yet nothing happens.

The problem is not the symptoms but the disease therefore of 'Why?'

Until the disease is effectively attacked the symptoms, as has been related, will only get worse.

In essence, what is being described is not much better than the situation in Europe's Middle Ages. At least human waste isn't yet apparently just dumped on the city streets by householders.

Yet in the scheme of how far things can descend to, unless something happens, that's where it will end up.

How many of those attending APEC will see what the everyday Moresby resident sees? Well at least they have so far been spared those personal and mostly inane personal tweets.

Very well articulated, bro Sil Bolkin. The appalling waste management situation is symptomatic of the mindset and style of leadership.

The governance, policy making and implementation at the decision-making level is reflected in the general attitude and behaviour of city residents as stakeholders and actors.

If there is lack of vision, planning, implementation and monitoring towards sustainability, the various functions collapse, rendering the entire system unworkable.

It is time for a re-evaluation of the city waste management system towards identifying and strengthening the unworkable/missing elements/links to achieve a workable system under the three Rs (reuse, reduce, recycle).

Keep up the good work in highlighting current and critical issues affecting PNG.

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