BRYAN KRAMER MP | Kramer Report
MADANG - It appears PNG's number one newspaper, the Post-Courier, that Papua New Guineans grew up with and respected has now become a political propaganda tool for corrupt politicians.
On Thursday, the Post-Courier published a fake and misleading report under the headline ‘Madang MP and supporters interrupt ground breaking event’.
"Madang MP Brian Kramer blatantly ‘gate crashed’ the official ground breaking ceremony of the K77 million Madang airport upgrading this morning,” the story began.
“Unabashed by the presence of the prime minister Peter O’Neill and 15 other cabinet ministers plus officials, Mr Kramer and his supporters moved in on the ceremony and through a loudspeaker system they had installed prior to the event, issued challenges against the prime minister and the government.
“Police were called in to control the situation to prevent a possible clash of supporters as soon as the Prime Minister was leaving for his other official event where he will open the restored Banamb Bridge."
The use of specific phrases emphasising negative connotations implies the article was authored by a publicist (paid media officer) with a personal vendetta and not by a professional journalist.
Words like "blatantly" gate crashed the official ground breaking ceremony and "unabashed (unashamed) by the presence of the prime minister."
Firstly, I'm not sure how a person blatantly gate crashes a public event where there is no gate to crash.
Secondly, even if there was one, you can't gate crash an event you have been invited to. One invitation extended by O'Neill himself on the floor of parliament and the second in writing from Aviation Minister Alfred Manase.
I can only assume the little man behind the little man, O'Neill's K500,000 chief media consultant Chris Hawkins authored the article and passed it onto Gorethy Kenneth to have the Post-Courier publish it. It appears Hawkins it getting a bit sloppy in his work.
I drove to the event on my own, I asked two youths from the area to help set up my PA system which I said I would bring along.
I stood in the crowd among women and children and allowed the official program and speeches to be completed without interruption.
I listened to governor Peter Yama carry on that I was not from Madang and suggesting I was a container rat. O'Neill who spoke next made the comment I act smart with a sharp mouth but achieve nothing.
The crowd took issue with their comments by booing. I calmed them down and asked that they be allowed to speak.
After all the speeches concluded, I stood up to speak, I told O'Neill he forgot to mention this project was initiated by the Somare government and that is funded by a K77.5 million loan that the people would have to pay off.
Police then rushed towards me in an effort to stop me from speaking, it was at that point that the crowd took issue. O'Neill and his 15 ministers used this time to quickly jump in their cars and speed off, scared the crowd would turn on them.
So if there was any interruption or confrontation then it would have been caused by the police.
To be honest, the whole event was quite sad if not embarrassing. The medium size crowd that turned up, namely people who live in the surrounding settlements, stood silently and watched.
When O'Neill and his 15 ministers were introduced, no one actually clapped their hands other than O'Neill, his delegation and few invited guests.
The question I'm now left to ask is how did this article get published by the Post-Courier and who authored it. It is clear evidence that the paper has become a propaganda machine for O'Neill.
I will be patiently waiting for the Post-Courier to issue an apology and retraction.
In the meantime I intend to report this article to the company's head office, News Limited in Australia. It's clear some fake journalist needs to get the sack.