The brutal life of West Papuan refugees in PNG

"Even in the hell of life, God reminds us of the beautiful gift of children. I reached out my hand as tears rolled down my eyes. Their gentle hands were rich in kindness, gratitude and smiles. I could not speak"

Kanamon
West Papuan refugees at Hohola with visitors from Caritas and the Catholic Bishops Conference who have supported them in Port Moresby and PNG’s border provinces (Reilly Kanamon)

REILLY KANAMON

PORT MORESBY – The plea from the West Papuan refugees in Port Moresby was resounding.

“All we long for now is a piece of land we can own. A piece of land that is all we need to rebuild ourselves, that is home to us.”

Continue reading "The brutal life of West Papuan refugees in PNG" »


How PNG gave us bananas 7,000 years ago

Researchers have gone bananas over this fruit’s complex ancestry. Most agree that Papua New Guinea is where domesticated bananas as we know them first appeared

Bananas An unusual type of banana showing white flesh with dark seeds
An unusual type of banana - similar to the species first domesticated in Papua New Guinea - showing white flesh with dark seeds

ELIZABETH PENNISI
| Science | Edited extracts

WASHINGTON - People like to know where their food comes from, but even experts are throwing up their hands when it comes to the origins of the modern banana.

An extensive genetic analysis of more than 100 varieties of wild and cultivated bananas has revealed the existence of three previously unknown—and possibly still living—ancestors.

Continue reading "How PNG gave us bananas 7,000 years ago" »


Setting the record straight on Chard’s Kokoda

“I believe that those of us with a stake in PNG's history have a responsibility to call out this book. It is not history. I would ask that you consider publishing my review at PNG Attitude and reach an informed audience who may further spread the word” - Neil Gow

Isurava

NEIL GOW

REVIEW - Presumably Daniel Lane’s book, ‘The Digger of Kokoda’, has been written and published to praise the qualities of the Australian soldiers involved in the Papuan campaign in 1942 and highlight these qualities through one man’s story.

These qualities are enshrined on the Isurava Memorial on the Kokoda Trail – courage, mateship, sacrifice and endurance.

Continue reading "Setting the record straight on Chard’s Kokoda" »


There are no more reds under the bed

"I think that it is an error to assume that because of our lamentable history of Sinophobia, this type of thinking therefore is still significant, socially or politically, in Australia"

Reds

CHRIS OVERLAND

ADELAIDE - Professor Colin Mackerras (‘Australia should rid itself of its fear of China’) rightly refers to how Australia's lamentable history of Sinophobia has, in the past at least, led to racially prejudiced and unjust policies such as the deplorable White Australia Policy.

I am old enough to remember the 'Reds under the bed' scare campaign that once influenced Australian political thinking, notably amongst conservatives.

Continue reading "There are no more reds under the bed" »


Australia should rid itself of its fear of China

It was not until 1973 and  the Whitlam Labor government that Australia formally rejected race as in any way relevant to immigration. The ‘yellow peril’ idea was discarded, but it remains active in the Australian imagination and is easy to revive

Mackerras
Chinese migrants arrive in South Australia, ready to walk to Victoria to begin mining in the 1850s gold rush. If they disembarked outside Victoria, they didn't have to pay immigration tax

COLIN MACKERRAS
| Pearls & Irritations

BRISBANE – Australia must overcome Sinophobia and rejoice in a future in the Asian region.

As a child growing up in Sydney in the 1950s, I recall my elders showing me a map of our region, with big red arrows pointing downwards from China to Australia.

Continue reading "Australia should rid itself of its fear of China" »


Now at last, the return of the legendary Telek

In Kambek, Telek applies his hauntingly beautiful voice to traverse many musical styles and capture the spirit of the Tolai people. The album blends contemporary with Melanesian rhythms: the music enriched with island harmonies and textured environmental sounds

Telek

MATTHEW FORD
| Wantok Music

MELBOURNE - George Mamua Telek, or Telek as he is known to his legion of fans throughout the world, has long been at the forefront of Papua New Guinea’s modern music.

His latest album, Kambek (I Lilikun Mulai), ‘Comeback’ in Tok Pisin and Kuanua, is well chosen, and references not only a new production (the first recorded in Rabaul since 1994) but Telek’s recent recovery from a long fought battle with mouth cancer.

Continue reading "Now at last, the return of the legendary Telek" »


Solomons partnership must be truth-based

Australia claims to be a friend and family to the Pacific, and it is true Australia has been an important aid donor for decades. But gratitude for this aid is tempered by scepticism about who it actually helps

Sogavare Albanese
Prime ministers Sogavare and Albanese - sweet talk of 'family' is no substitute for a genuine and equitable relationship

DOROTHY WICKHAM, TARCISIUS KABUTAULAKA et al*
| Pursuit | The University of Melbourne

MELBOURNE - Last week, Solomon Islands prime minister Manasseh Sogavare and Australia’s Anthony Albanese met in Canberra for the first time, less than a month after Australia offered to fund Solomon Islands’ elections to avoid delay.

Since Solomon Islands signed a security pact with China earlier this year, the country has garnered unprecedented global attention.

Continue reading "Solomons partnership must be truth-based" »


Australia & PNG develop a security treaty

Mr Marles later said Australia also wanted to help PNG address any capability gaps in its armed forces. "Aviation might be an area where we could do more," he said. "Already we supply the bulk of the maritime capability for the PNG defence force, but we feel there are opportunities for us to do more"

Marles
Australian defence minister Richard Marles, a regular visitor to PNG these days, greets prime minister James Marape

STEPHEN DZIEDZIC
| ABC foreign affairs reporter

PORT MORESBY - Australian defence minister Richard Marles has flagged that he wants to significantly expand defence cooperation across the Pacific, starting with an ambitious bid to expand military ties and sign a security treaty with Papua New Guinea.

Mr Marles is in PNG for a two-day trip and held talks with Prime Minister James Marape yesterday.

Continue reading "Australia & PNG develop a security treaty" »


Global Fragility Act & PNG: Can US succeed?

A seemingly radical approach that relies on prevention and relinquishing control may be a foreign policy game-changer

Rufina Peter MP (Andrew Kutan  AFP)
Rufina Peter MP (Andrew Kutan, AFP)

JESSICA COLLINS
| The Interpreter | Lowy Institute

SYDNEY - It was a long-awaited announcement that drew little attention in Australia.

In April, US President Joe Biden named Haiti, Libya, Mozambique, Papua New Guinea and Coastal West Africa as its partners under the Global Fragility Act of 2019.

Continue reading "Global Fragility Act & PNG: Can US succeed?" »


The blackout curse that magic cannot fix

I call it a curse for many reasons but I won't discuss them all. It's a curse because it really doesn't matter which government is in place or which CEO is appointed, no one - and I mean no one - has really addressed the blackout curse

Blackout

JOHN KURI

PORT MORESBY - What is it? Is it some kind of magic or witchcraft? Is it a spell or incantation?

This is Papua New Guinea - a place where black power still rules the lives of citizens in the urban centres and rural areas.

Continue reading "The blackout curse that magic cannot fix" »


Why do we ignore a world at breaking point?

The United Nations Development Program (UNDP) is actively supporting Papua New Guinea to lower its greenhouse gas emissions and embrace a transformation to a green and sustainable economy. It is part of ushering in a new era to reshape our future

Students frm la Salle Technical College  HoholaStudents from la Salle Technical High School, Hohola (Clive Hawigen, UNDP)

DIRK WAGENER
| UNDP Resident Representative, Papua New Guinea

PORT MORESBY - Is the imminent climate catastrophe driving humanity to extinction?

How do we effectively reduce global greenhouse emissions and counter the cost-of-living crisis that is triggering hardship and poverty for billions? Humanity seems paralysed – why?

Continue reading "Why do we ignore a world at breaking point?" »


On the hospitality of the Melanesian people

Roberto Colombo is a PhD candidate researching codes of revenge ('payback') and codes of hospitality. He wrote asking me if I 'd encountered evidence of a ‘culture of hospitality’ amongst Bougainvilleans. I replied as you will see below, and opened Roberto's enquiry to ask our readers to respond in terms of Melanesian (not just Bougainvillean) hospitality. I hope you can contribute

A Traditional-dancers-in-Bougainville

| ROBERTO COLOMBO

GLASGOW - I am a PhD student at the University of Glasgow in the United Kingdom and currently working on a thesis which explores the ways in which traditional socio-cultural codes shape the dynamics of civil wars and insurgencies.

I’m reaching out because I've read with interest your articles on Bougainville, which I am considering using as a case study to show how socio-cultural codes provided the Bougainville Revolutionary Army and the Bougainville Resistance Force elements with mechanisms for recruitment and support during the civil war of 1988-98.

Continue reading "On the hospitality of the Melanesian people" »


Fighting off bulldozers in sacred kwila forests

The kwila trees are considered to be ancestors and are never cut down. The Tivia clan only use the wood when the trees fall naturally. "Our belief is that when the masalai touch that sap, humans come out from that. It is the creation of our clan”

Chandler

JO CHANDLER
| The Guardian | @jo_m_chandler

MADANG - In mid-May, a bulldozer began clearing a logging road into an area of largely untouched rainforest near the village of Suburam, on Papua New Guinea’s north coast, between the mountains of the Adelbert Range and the Bismarck Sea.

Towering kwila trees were among those locals say were felled by loggers. This is a coveted, high-value species that yields the rich red timber familiar in Australia as merbau.

Continue reading "Fighting off bulldozers in sacred kwila forests" »


Madness reigns supreme in US Pacific deal

Papua New Guineans have been grossly misled and opened wide our doors for large scale criminal gangsters and terrorists to come on to our turf. The Marape government is strongly urged to terminate this hollow and ridiculous agreement

Crimea bridge bombing
Russian President Vladimir Putin has accused Ukraine of attacking the bridge to Russian-annexed Crimea, calling it an "act of terrorism". President Putin said Ukraine's intelligence forces had aimed to destroy a critically important piece of Russia's civil infrastructure (BBC)

CORNEY KOROKAN ALONE
| Twitter @CorneyKAlone

PORT MORESBY - Delusions reign supreme. It is disgusting to see naivety and short-sightedness reigning supreme in beloved Papua New Guinea.

We should and must know better. The Marape-Rosso government has been hoodwinked and misled.

Continue reading "Madness reigns supreme in US Pacific deal" »


West's anti-China rhetoric reeks of hypocrisy

Those nations, which divided China for plunder, continue to pour more and more opprobrium on it, which, by an incredible means of projection, becomes understood as an aggressive power, supposedly hellbent on upsetting the ‘international rules-based order.’ The hypocrisy is astounding

Capture

JOHN QUERIPEL
| Pearls & Irritations

NEWCASTLE - The direction from whence comes most of the anti-China rhetoric in the world today is hardly surprising. It reeks of hypocrisy.

Much of it emanates from the very nations responsible for the dividing up of China into spheres of influence in the late 19th and early 20th century.

Continue reading "West's anti-China rhetoric reeks of hypocrisy" »


Rabaul has been left out of our national story

Six weeks later, on January 23, 1942, Japan invaded Rabaul, and within six months Diana's father, uncle, and most of the nearly 2,000 Australian soldiers and civilians who had been left behind were dead

Diana Martell
Diana Martell was forced to leave her father and uncle behind in Rabaul (Ian Townsend, ABC RN))

IAN TOWNSEND
| ABC Radio National

SYDNEY - While Kokoda continues to loom large in the minds of Australians, Rabaul hardly resonates.

But relatives of the nearly 2,000 Australian soldiers and civilians who were left behind when Japan invaded the island of New Britain have not forgotten what happened in 1942.

Continue reading "Rabaul has been left out of our national story" »


Buai bans don’t work; so what will?

Under the 'partial ban' policy, betel nut was only allowed to be traded in designated areas, but experience showed this only made the problem worse. The winners were the law breakers

Buai ban

BUSA JEREMIAH WENOGO

PORT MORESBY - Once again Port Moresby’s National Capital District Commission (NCDC) has embarked on a ban - this time targeting the sale of cooked foods in the city.

This is not the Commission’s first ban. In the last 10 years, there have been three other bans targeting the betel nut trade and the sale of cooked foods in the city.

Continue reading "Buai bans don’t work; so what will?" »


NOTE FOR OUR READERS

The editor is finding his recovery from back surgery more difficult than expected, with the result that articles are not appearing with the customary regularity. This may continue for some time. Please bear with me - KJ


At long last, can malaria be eradicated?

Two new vaccines may finally turn back the ancient plague of malaria. But the arrival of the vaccines also complicates the path to ending the disease

Capture
It’s beautiful but Kenya’s Wigwa River is a breeding site for mosquitoes (Photograph by Kang-Chun Cheng)

APOORVA MANDAVILLI
| New York Times

Link here to read the complete story

NEW YORK, USA - All through childhood, Miriam Abdullah was shuttled in and out of hospitals, her thin body wracked with fever and ravaged by malaria.

She was so sick so often that her constant treatments drained her parents, who also cared for her many siblings, both financially and emotionally.

Continue reading "At long last, can malaria be eradicated?" »


Oz media treatment of women is no template

 Ten years after Julia Gillard's landmark speech on misogyny, Dr Victoria Fielding examines why not much has changed and why Australia offers no template for addressing sexism in Papua New Guinea and elsewhere

Women Gillard speech
In the Australian parliament in 2012, responding to opposition leader Abbott accusing her of 'sexism', prime minister  Julia Gillard delivered a powerful speech against misogyny that gained global attention

VICTORIA FIELDING

ADELAIDE - This week, misogynist Steve Price decided to spew out his sexist opinion of the Australian women’s football league (AFLW), calling it “substandard” and that “even high school boys are better to watch”.

Price and the Herald Sun newspaper, which published his filth, don’t care about the damage this ‘opinion’ does to the AFL women players, the women and men who admire them and the young girls aspiring to be equal to their male peers.

Continue reading "Oz media treatment of women is no template" »


Appeasers silent as Russia loses grip on war

If Putin sees his mighty army collapsing, his desperation to retain power may lead to more of the bad decision-making that has been the hallmark of the Russian conduct of the war so far. The use of tactical nuclear weapons may become his last resort

A troops
Ukraine troops advance on Kherson and other Russian-occupied areas

CHRIS OVERLAND

ADELAIDE - Since I wrote this piece (Sachs’ & the New Appeasers have it wrong, 20 July 2022), the appeasers have become silent.

The appalling atrocities committed by the Russians in Ukraine have revealed the true nature of the Russian regime.

Vladimir Putin is not a wronged and misunderstood man.

He is an old school imperialist of the worst kind.

You do not do deals with such a man and expect them to be honoured.

At present, the Ukrainians continue to advance in the Donbas and near Kherson.

They appear to have mastered manoeuvre warfare, something the Russian army seems incapable of replicating.

Strategic and tactical ineptitude by the Russians, combined with severe logistical and personnel problems, renders the Russian army highly vulnerable to a fast-moving enemy force.

As of today, Ukrainian troops had retaken more territory in regions illegally annexed by Russia, and continue to advance near the southern city of Kherson.

They were also moving towards Russian-held Luhansk in the east.

"There are new liberated settlements in several regions," said president Volodymyr Zelensky.

While it is too early to be sure, there are clear signs the Russian army is crumbling in the face of the better led, better armed and better motivated Ukrainians.

The implications of this are profound, both for Ukraine and Russia as well as for the rest of the world.

If Putin sees his mighty army collapsing, his desperation to retain power may lead to even more of the very bad decision making that has been the hallmark of the Russian conduct of this war so far.

A reisner
Colonel Markus Reisner has emerged as one of the most credible experts analysing the Russia Ukraine War

The use of tactical nuclear weapons may become his last resort.

Consequently, whether we have fired a bullet or not, we are all invested in the outcome of this appalling conflict.

For readers interested in military matters who want an objective and dispassionate assessment of events in Ukraine, I recommend the commentaries posted on YouTube by Colonel Markus Reisner PhD, commander of the Austrian Army's principal staff training college and its elite Vienna Guards Regiment.


Poetry for Peace

Putin

PAUL OATES

There’s a tremblin’ in the Kremlin,
And a rumour in the Duma,
That it‘s a serious time to definitely make a change,
For there’s those who can’t deny,
That there’s no good reason why,
Putin’s downfall's taking too long to arrange.


B’ville signals tough line on independence

In the last 100 years we have had to endure hardships from oppressive regimes who sought to take away our resources, our rights and even our lives. Our struggle for independence has been a long one

lupari himata
Former PNG chief secretary Isaac Lupari and Bougainville chief secretary Shadrach Himata

SHADRACH HIMATA
| Chief Secretary, Bougainville Government | Edited extracts

CANBERRA -In 2019 a referendum was successfully conducted on Bougainville to decide on the status of our political future in accordance with the PNG Constitution.

An overwhelming 97.7% of our people voted for a political independence from Papua New Guinea.

Continue reading "B’ville signals tough line on independence" »


More talk but still no ICAC on PNG’s horizon

The O’Neill and Marape governments’ many years of pro-ICAC rhetoric without establishing a working organisation is probably the best guide to acknowledging that PNG is unlikely to see a viable ICAC any time soon

Corrupt

KEITH JACKSON

NOOSA - Papua New Guinea is moving slowly towards establishing a long-promised Independent Commission Against Corruption with the help of the United Nations Office on Drugs & Crime (UNODC).

UNODC is supporting interim ICAC commissioner Thomas Eluh, who was appointed more than four years ago to deliver the PNG Anti-Corruption Project.

It is now expected that ICAC will begin the real work of fighting corruption in 2023.

The project, funded by the European Union, covers the development of management, recruitment, induction and staffing systems, the preparation of a code of conduct and a communication strategy.

A draft anti-corruption awareness and education strategy was developed in March 2022.

“Fighting corruption is very complex and requires a concerted effort from every citizen to have any chance of minimising this epidemic,” said Mr Eluh.

“If you want a corruption-free and safe tomorrow, I call on everyone now to assist ICAC in whatever way possible.

“We must try and eradicate corruption from society and save PNG from the clutches of corruption,” he said.

In a recent workshop, participants discussed key elements in establishing ICAC, the importance of an effective awareness and education strategy and fostering communication and collaboration between ICAC, civil society organisations and relevant government agencies.

Participants also addressed the topic of whether corruption affects women and men differently.

The main outcome of the workshops was that the interim ICAC will continue working on awareness programs in collaboration with civil society organisations CSOs and government agencies.

That the interim ICAC is still conducting discussions about implementing awareness programs after four years provides a clear view of the snail-like pace of PNG’s adoption of a robust anti-corruption body.

It throws a shadow over the PNG government’s commitment to fighting corruption.

Perhaps we will see a more energetic approach now that the United Nations Office on Drugs & Crime, UNDP and the European Union are collaborating in the PNG Anti-Corruption Project.

But the O’Neill and Marape governments’ many years of pro-ICAC rhetoric, workshops and discussions without establishing a working organisation is probably the best guide to acknowledging that PNG is unlikely to see a viable ICAC any time soon.

As Wikipedia succinctly notes: "Political corruption in PNG is largely enforced by political nepotism and the patronage system of governance.

"Elected leaders are inclined to seize and distribute resources amongst their electorates in order to secure and maintain popular support."


Learning Tok Pisin: it's harder than it looks

At first as I began to learn Pidgin, I thought, ‘This is easy. It’s a form of baby talk and there’s nothing to it'. I could not have been more mistaken

Tok-pisin-in-germany

DORIAN (DUSTY) NICOL
| Unravel  | Edited

CALIFORNIA - I arrived in Papua New Guinea in September 1980, a young geologist on the adventure of his life.

Esso Eastern, a subsidiary of Exxon Minerals, had hired me to open their copper and gold exploration office and I was living my dream, setting off on a major career step toward the life of physical and intellectual adventure I wanted.

Continue reading "Learning Tok Pisin: it's harder than it looks" »


Can you help reconnect a lost colonial tie?

The whole business of reconnection between Australians and Papua New Guineans from the colonial era is an interesting side issue that often goes on in the comments section of PNG Attitude and the ExKiap website

Fitz pic Danota & Gogo
Danota and Gogo - eminent Australian media figure, Richard Glover, who they cared for as a child, seeks to be reconnected with them or their descendants

PHILIP FITZPATRICK

TUMBY BAY - My wife and I spent nine years living at Hervey Bay in Queensland before we moved back to South Australia a few years ago.

Lovely weather but Queensland doesn’t have any decent newspapers so we read the Sydney Morning Herald instead.

Continue reading "Can you help reconnect a lost colonial tie?" »


From betel nut seller to university graduate

My advice to young people who might have dropped out of school is, despite the pain and obstacles and negativity of other people, never lose sight of your dream

Benjamin Minaro

BENJAMIN SAP MINARO JR

RABAUL – Originally from Kiwi village in Enga Province, I dropped out of school in 2014 when I was doing Grade 10 and my family and relatives lost interest in me.

I made my way to Port Moresby to find work. The street became my home and life became miserable.

Continue reading "From betel nut seller to university graduate" »


We've got our Covid policy ass backwards

The target of Australia's medical authorities is not to reduce Covid transmission. Rather, the target is to reduce Covid mitigation measures - and then to ignore any negative effects of doing so

Aircraft
Dr David Berger is a general practitioner and emergency doctor based in Broome, Western Australia. He uses this aircraft, in which he's flown around the world, in his remote medical activities

DR DAVID BERGER
| Twitter @YouAreLobbyLud

BROOME, WA - I want to make a really fundamental point. The way Covid policy is being pursued is ass backwards.

The success targets are the measures themselves. In other words, there are no meaningful targets, no valid measures of success.

Continue reading "We've got our Covid policy ass backwards" »


Opportunism reigns: US-Pacific Declaration

As has become customary in the Blinkenesque argot, one takes the management waffle with the occasional candid remark. China, the obvious target in this deeper regional engagement by the US, is not mentioned once.

China us pacific
GSOMIA (General Security of Military Information Agreement) is a military intelligence sharing agreement between Japan and South Korea (Map by ABC)

BINOY KAMPMARK
| Pearls & Irritations

MELBOURNE - If ever there was a blatant statement of realpolitik masquerading as friendliness, the latest US-Pacific Island declaration must count as one of them.

The Biden administration has been busy of late wooing Pacific Island states in an effort to discourage increasingly sharp tilt towards China.

Continue reading "Opportunism reigns: US-Pacific Declaration" »


The King & Duncan & the mangroves of Boera

It was then the team leader informed us of the royal visit to Papua New Guinea, including a trip to Boera village. The Prince of Wales would officially launch our mangrove conservation project

Prince Charles plants the mangrove seedling at Boera village
Prince Charles plants the mangrove seedling at Boera village during his visit of 2012

DUNCAN GABI

WEWAK – On this morning in 2012, I stood inside the greenhouse surrounded by mangrove seedlings and in a state of high anxiety.

Soon I heard distant singing and the beating of kundu drums followed by cheering.

Continue reading "The King & Duncan & the mangroves of Boera" »


Oz blasted over response to K268m fraud

"Australia's apparent inability to assist in this most basic of legal processes does not sit well with its broader anti-corruption and security intentions in the region" – Royal Papua New Guinea Constabulary

Samson Jubi was granted Australian permanent residency more than a decade ago (Facebook)
Samson Jubi was granted Australian permanent residency more than a decade ago (Facebook)

SEAN RUBINSZTEIN-DUNLOP
| ABC Investigations | Extract

SYDNEY - A Papua New Guinea government minister and top justice officials say they are "extremely frustrated" with Australia for harbouring a Cairns resident wanted for one of the biggest alleged frauds in the country's legal history.

In an early test for the Albanese government's Pacific strategy, PNG immigration minister Bryan Kramer and the country's national police force have spoken out to the ABC about "unacceptable" delays in Australia's handling of an extradition request for PNG citizen Samson Jubi.

Continue reading "Oz blasted over response to K268m fraud" »


Cherished Words

CherishRAYMOND SIGIMET

I still cherish those first words
Strings of harmonious chords

I will not forget their worth
Spoken with sincerest thought

I wonder about their measures
Entangled down many years

Gifting me revelations
Ticking off recollections

The thoughtful anecdotes
The inspirational quotes

These I cherish as I rummage
Through these maiden messages

Chiselled on life's pages
To live on down the ages


Drowning nations: ‘This is how an atoll dies’

The cost of eking out a living on islands threatened by sea level rise eventually becomes too much to bear, causing families to leave and the nation to disappear. "This is how a Pacific atoll dies. This is how our islands will cease to exist”

Marshall Islands president David Kabua addresses the United Nations General Assembly last week (AP Photo by Jason DeCrow)
Marshall Islands president David Kabua addresses the United Nations General Assembly last week (AP Photo by Jason DeCrow)

PIA SARKAR
| AP News | Extracts

NEW YORK - While world leaders from wealthy countries acknowledge the ‘existential threat’ of climate change, Tuvalu prime minister Kausea Natano is racing to save his tiny island nation from drowning by raising it four to five meters above sea level through land reclamation.

And while experts issue warnings about the eventual uninhabitability of the Marshall Islands, president David Kabua must reconcile the inequity of a seawall built to protect one house that is now flooding another one next door.

Continue reading "Drowning nations: ‘This is how an atoll dies’" »


Corruption eating the nation, says Rosso

"Corruption boils down to the attitude of individuals, which needs a complete change. The onus is on everyone to end this disease that continues to eat away the fabric of the nation"

John rosso
PNG deputy prime minister John Rosso


NEWS DESK
| National Broadcasting Corporation

PORT MORESBY - The Marape government has vowed that it will work closely with key government agencies to combat corruption in Papua New Guinea.

Acting prime minister John Rosso said the government cannot tackle corruption alone, and needs a collective effort from government agencies and every individual.

Continue reading "Corruption eating the nation, says Rosso" »


Vice-minister Tonpi wants to attack laziness

“When people are too dependent on the government for handouts, their mindset is positioned in one direction only. Their minds become stagnant and they will not prosper"


Raphael Tonpi

PETER WARI
| The National

PORT MORESBY - Poor judgement has resulted in Southern Highlands been riddled with law and order issues and this needs to change, says Mendi-Munihu MP, Raphael Tonpi.

“We need to respect and comfort them and find ways to assist and make Mendi town regain its glory days,” he said.

Continue reading "Vice-minister Tonpi wants to attack laziness" »


Australia violated Torres Islander rights: UN

 

Houses top
Dwellings damaged by a storm surge on Iama Island (John Rainbird)

KEITH JACKSON

MapNOOSA – The United Nations has declared that Australia has violated the human rights of a group of Torres Strait Islanders by failing to adequately protect them from the impacts of climate change.

Torres Strait Islanders are Indigenous Australians who live on small clusters of low-lying islands between Australia and Papua New Guinea.

Continue reading "Australia violated Torres Islander rights: UN" »


BRA was the root of a bloody civil conflict

When the Bougainville Revolutionary Army succeeded in routing the PNG police and military from Bougainville in 1988, the BRA turned their violence upon Bougainvilleans they believed to be enemies or just ‘easy pickings’

Leonard Roka
The young Leonard Fong Roka and torture scar picked up in a refugee camp during the Bougainville civil war. When still a schoolboy, Leonard was deployed to serve in the bodyguard of Joseph Kabui, later president of the Autonomous Bougainville Government

LEONARD FONG ROKA
| From Our Archive, 23 September 2012

MADANG – In October 1992 I was a kid roaming around parts of the Kieta and the Bana districts in South Bougainville with Bougainville Revolutionary Army (BRA).

I was a member of the ‘A’ Company bodyguard unit.

Continue reading "BRA was the root of a bloody civil conflict" »


Quake signals danger for Wafi-Golpu project

As deadly earthquakes pose catastrophic risks to communities, all levels of government have been asked to pause the Wafi-Golpu deep sea tailings pipeline proposal until consent has been given by affected communities

A large crack in a highway near Kainantu following the 7.6 magnitude Morobe earthquake that killed at least seven people
A large crack in a highway near Kainantu following the 7.6 magnitude Morobe earthquake that killed at least seven people

NOOSA - Following the deadly Morobe earthquake 10 days ago, a coalition of Papua New Guinean and Australian civil society organisations have called for a pause to the Wafi-Golpu gold mine project.

The quake had a magnitude of 7.6 and the organisations want the geology to be fully understood and for Morobe communities to be consulted, especially on the risks of deep sea tailings placement (DSTP) to their livelihoods and health.

Continue reading "Quake signals danger for Wafi-Golpu project" »


Enough! We need to see the end of Empires

"I have been reading history for 60 years now and one of the things I have realised is that the human urge for conquest and the instinct to dominate others transcends geography, ethnicity, language and culture" - Chris Overland

Assyrian Empire (2025-605 BCE)
Assyrian Empire (2025-605 BCE)

CHRIS OVERLAND

ADELAIDE - The death of Queen Elizabeth II has led to some reflection upon the British Empire and its legacy.

Commentary has ranged from the vile and tasteless to thoughtful consideration upon what is undeniably a very mixed British imperial legacy.

Continue reading "Enough! We need to see the end of Empires" »


Today's tribes are not loyal to their own

The invigilators didn’t care who won the election, as long as the sitting member’s henchmen were not able to push false votes or influence the counting

Showing that ballot boxes are empty before voting
Poll workers demonstrate that ballot boxes are empty before voting commences

JAIVE SMARE

PORT MORESBY – ‘Bigmanship’, in Simon Davidson’s, 'Bigmanship: the deliverer of corrupt leaders', is such a strange and new term.

If you look at it in the construct of Simon’s article, it’s like watching the vomit of over-analysis give life to something that is a post-colonial media construct.

Continue reading "Today's tribes are not loyal to their own" »


The Covid data they don't want you to see

BA.4.6, a subvariant of Omicron, quickly gaining traction in the US and the UK, is able to evade immunity acquired from vaccination and prior infection. It is likely to be followed by BA.2.75.2 - an even more evasive subvariant (Illustration by Andrii Vodolazhskyi)

New Covid variant

KEITH JACKSON

NOOSA - The full weight of nine governments and the public health bureaucracy continue to succeed in persuading the Australian population that Covid is not something to worry too much about.

One result of this nonsense is that in five of Australia’s eight states and territories, Covid infection is showing positive growth, with Queensland and South Australia looking likely to soon burst out into major expansion.

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Goroka ransacked after murder of official

Fego Kiniafa’s tribesmen rampaged through Goroka town armed with bush knives, burning houses and shops and ransacking other buildings

Goroka arson
A building burns in Goroka following the slaying of Fego Kiniafa

KEITH JACKSON

NOOSA - Goroka was tense last night following the brutal murder of the chief executive officer of the PNG Ports Corporation, Fego Kiniafa, 43, on Saturday.

Kiniafa was killed near his village of Nagamiufa as his tribesmen clashed with clans from Korofeiga and Lower Bena, with the fighting taking to the streets of Goroka early on Sunday morning.

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Give the raskol a tenner & watch him grow

These are youths who sleep in the drains beside the Courts, at Yakapilin Market and in various dirty shanties around Port Moresby

10kina

JORDAN DEAN

PORT MORESBY - Whilst others were painting their faces on Independence Day, I spent my day at Jack Pidik Park.

I had been invited to give a little speech at the Human Development Institute graduation ceremony. So, what is significant about that?

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The mountain cave that harboured Sgt Ryan

Ryan hid in a cave in the mountains of Sarewagat, 1,000 metres above sea level in a steep, densely forested valley with a fast flowing river

Peter Ryan - just 18 when called to war
Peter Ryan MM - just 18 when called to war

JACOB KUMAI

OLIN – This is my place, Olin; a little village in Nawaeb District, Morobe Province.

Some years ago, I was told by my great-grandfather about a World War II soldier who was assisted by the natives of this area to escape from the Japanese.

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Ill Papua governor banned from treatment

Spokesperson Rifai Darus said Governor Enembe's home is being closely guarded by thousands of people, including his close relatives

Governor Enembe undergoing medical treatment. He's believed to be the target of an Indonesian power struggle over Indigenous administrations in Papua (Pacific Pos)
Governor Enembe undergoing medical treatment. He's believed to be the target of an Indonesian power struggle over Indigenous administrations in Papua (Pacific Pos)

LAURENS IKINIA
| Asia Pacific Review | Edited

AUCKLAND - Governor Lukas Enembe of Indonesia’s Papua Province has been banned from travelling abroad, preventing him from undergoing vital medical treatment in the Philippines.

It is believed the popular governor of Melanesian Papua is the target of an Indonesian power struggle over Indigenous administrations in the region.

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'Change is up to the people,' says governor

"We must stop getting drunk in public. We must stop playing pokies all night. We must stop cutting deals & compromising the public interest. Our public servants must turn up to work on time"

Governor Allan Bird
Governor Allan Bird

GOVERNOR ALLAN BIRD

WEWAK -Independence is not free, it comes with Responsibility.

In my address to the Sepik people on the occasion of Papua New Guinea’s 47th independence anniversary, I stressed that it is important we understand independence as meaning that the people have the right to do everything themselves.

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B’ville looks to its international relations

As an emerging Pacific Island state, Bougainville will work towards building mutual government relationships that will enhance trust, trade and investment

Bougainville Vice-President-Patrick-Nisira

"As we reach out to the international frontier, our focus must be on growing the Bougainville economy and attaining fiscal self-reliance" - Bougainville vice-president Patrick Nisira

NEWS DESK
| Bougainville News

BUKA - The Autonomous Bougainville Government continues to make headway with its strategy to make practical the people’s 97.7% vote for Independence in 2019.

The Bougainville Independence Mission, launched by president Ishmael Toroama in April 2021, marked the beginning of the implementation of a Trident Strategy to prepare Bougainville for independence.

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The allure of the Crown: PNG & the Palace

"The emergent PNG elite was mightily enamoured with aspects of monarchy, notably the awarding of various medals and honours. Such bilas never lost its allure, whether in PNG or elsewhere in the remnants of the former Empire"

Knighthood-sir-mel-togolo June 2018
In PNG, the imperial awards system is maintained alongside the home-grown Order of Logohu. The Post-Courier records the knighting of business leader Sir Mel Togolo in June 2018

CHRIS OVERLAND

ADELAIDE - I guess it is baffling to most outside observers that a foreign Queen, who was formerly an Empress, should have been the Head of State in Papua New Guinea and generally held in high regard.

In pre-independence times the Queen's status must have mystified Papua New Guineans.

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The real virtues of constitutional monarchy

Britannia defends Law, Monarchy and Religion against Violation from the Great Political Libertine. Despite its many flaws, inequities and inequalities, a constitutional monarchy remains the least easily manipulated governance system humans have devised

Monarchy top
Death or Liberty! Cartoon by George Cruikshank, London, 1819

CHRIS OVERLAND

ADELAIDE - Raymond Sigimet's perfectly competent and informative article about the death of the Queen triggered a remarkable outpouring of venom about the monarchy from those who want to replace it with a republic.

There is no denying that the monarchy is an archaic and elitist institution. Also, there are plenty of examples of royals behaving badly.

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