IndyWatch New Guinea News Feed Archiver

Go Back:30 Days | 7 Days | 2 Days | 1 Day

IndyWatch New Guinea News Feed Today.

Go Forward:1 Day | 2 Days | 7 Days | 30 Days

IndyWatch New Guinea News Feed was generated at Pacific News IndyWatch.

Tuesday, 20 February

21:45

"LOVE TRIANGLE GONE WRONG" "Susan Merrell moving on from Belden Namah to Peter O'Neill to Powes Parkop". "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

By Sonja Barry Ramoi
'The woman Papua New Guineans love to hate', who was a friend who became a foe after I told her off about a particularly rude and pretty much inexcusable comment she made about Belden Namah in 2013, has been deported from Papua New Guinea.
Susan Merrell - aka Ferrell Merrell, aka Floozy Doozy Suzy (or however which way she wants to spell it) - is so far up herself that she must be off her rocker to blame the Prime Minister for her deportation, and also to mention me in her post today.
Her deportation is not the PM's doing, and it also had absolutely nothing to do with me.
Yes I did report her to the Judiciary (possibly in 2015) for certain comments of hers which I found contemptuous, and I believe that I recommended that she be blacklisted. However I am certainly not the only person who has recommended in the past that she be blacklisted.
As for her official surname (not Merrell) being flagged, I have known about her official surname for years and I am sure, especially since I knew what name she travels on, that other people from PNG would also have known.
I have not yet contacted the Chief Immigration Officer Solomon Kantha to confirm the reason why she was deported.
It appears however according to a copy of a post by Susan Merrell which was sent to me (earlier tonight), that she did not fill out her visa application form upon arrival correctly, and therefore it seems that she did not disclose to Immigration the true purpose of her visit and thats why she was told to leave PNG.
...

21:26

THE PNG DEFENCE FORCE WHITE PAPER & THE BLUE PRINT "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

by Eragairma Yal

I don't know if our Papua New Guinea Defence Force has a Blue Print.

PNG has obtained the Right to Self-Rule in 1973 as a pre-qualification to gaining independence in 1975, 16th September.

43yrs on and I have just learned one fundamental fact that our PNG Defense Force has still been operating as the Eighth Division under the Australian Defense Force Military. The fact is we have not gained Military Independence. We are an Eighth Element or Division similar to an Infantry under the Australian Defence Force Military.

One thing that baffles me is that the Australian Defense Force knowing very well that we are the Eighth Division operating under the ADF Military, why can't they develop our Defense Force into a full pledge Military Force carrying Land, Air and Sea Elements with complete state of the art equipment setup and logistics support with routine modern training as a requirement?

Whatever arrangements they may have had in the past that lead us to this stage, I write to challenge the PNGDF Brigadier General and the government of the day that we must have our own Blue Print for our Military that must lead us into attaining Militarily Independence.

I can remember the announcement of our Defence White Paper some time ago but what was it about? And what developments did we achieve as in the three elements of the Defence Force? What did our soldiers and paramilitary officers gain as in training and personal empowerment?

Our own BLUEPRINT must spell out the establishment of our military components, divisions, infantries, units and paramilitary forces etc.

Our trained Human Resources as in Cadets and Privates are sitting idle in the military barracks basically waiting for their pay packets, SoE callouts, and their eventual retrenchment cheque.

We need to use them in our circular workforces in the public service sector. While we already have some specialists trained as engineers, doctors, nurses, teachers, CHWs, lawyers, etc we ought to increase the training in the different disciplines and deploy them on secondment arrangements to serve everywhere in the country.

We need to use our trained human resource effectively to alleviate the shortfall in our workforce to develop our country.

I regret to see that we have some highly skille...

20:48

SABL petition anniversary marks PNG's greatest ever scandal "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

February 21st is the first anniversary of the presentation of a 10,000 signature petition to the Department of Lands demanding the cancellation of the SABL leases. 2018, also marks five-years since the SABL Commission of Inquiry exposed the full extent of the illegal land grab, which affects more than 10% of the whole country.

But despite repeated promises from the ONeill government to cancel the leases, stretching back to 2013, almost nothing has been done. 

ACT NOW! believes the governments response to the illegal SABL land grab is the greatest scandal this country has ever seen. 

Even the brave landowners who have struggled through the courts to have leases declared illegal, without any help or support from the government, or have stood up and defied the logging companies despite attacks from the police, still have foreign companies occupying their soil.

A list released two weeks ago by the Lands Department revealed that of 75 SABL leases examined in the Commission of Inquiry, only 10 have been cancelled and 5 of those were on the direction of the courts and four voluntarily surrendered.

Meanwhile, as the government delays get ever longer, most of the SABL files have disappeared from the Department of Lands.

Fifty thousand square kilometres of land, more than 10% of the entire nation given away illegally yet the government does almost nothing to undo the wrong and indeed is still allowing logging companies to plunder the forests.

With APEC leaders now preparing to visit PNG, the SABL land grab is a huge embarrassment for the nation.

The United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights slammed the PNG government over its failure to protect its own citizens during his visit two-weeks ago, saying many communities have been forcibly evicted from their homes, often reportedly violently, with impunity and allegedly sometimes with the complicity of local police.

It seems the whole w...

20:00

Too late for PNG & its fragile & exploitable vulnerabilities "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

Muse Mohammed PhotographyCHRIS OVERLAND

ADELAIDE - Sadly, I believe Phil Fitzpatrick's analysis of the current situation in Papua New Guinea is accurate.

Worse still, I now think that it is too late to prevent PNG's inevitable spiral into some form of authoritarian state or, possibly, an anarchical collapse into a number of smaller, competing mini-states. The latter outcome would be more broadly consistent with its pre-colonial history.

There are many reasons for this decline but the overriding one is that PNGs traditional cultures are not really conducive to the establishment and maintenance of a viable democratic state.

PNG cultures are communalist in nature but do not have underlying governance structures that provide a solid foundation for democratic institutions.

They are, in essence, anarchical, and profoundly inconsistent with the acceptance or even imposition of any form of central authority except by force and coercion.

PNG is not alone in this. Even so-called mature democracies rely, at bottom, upon the imposition and maintenance of state authority by means of a centrally controlled, enforceable legal framework.

The mere existence of relatively large and, very often, heavily armed Police forces is mute testimony to the fact that even the most ostensibly modern and socially unified societies are sustainable only through the use of various sanctions to impose order upon an often fractious citizenry.

Events like the London riots of 2011 come as such a tremendous shock because we all cling to the comforting illusion that our societies are fundamentally self-regulating. They are not and, in fact, never have been.

In truth, we citizens of the mature democracies have merely been allowed to participate in a governance process which, in practice, frequently continues to favour various influential elites over and above the broader public interest.

This is why organisations like the National Rifle Association in the USA can continue to exert the influence they do despite the painfully obvious necessity to undertake major reforms to that country's gun laws.

People like Noam Chomsky have pointed out how the mass media has become complicit in the...

19:00

South Pacific looks to China as West cuts aid & turns away "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

Papua New Guinea Mine WatchALAN BOYD | Asia Times

HONG KONG - China is quietly filling the breach as traditional Western donors cut back on their aid pledges to the South Pacific.

And it seems many of the struggling island nations on the receiving end of Chinas largesse couldnt be happier with the shifting currents.

Last month, Australias international development minister, Concetta Fierravanti-Wells, scathingly attacked Beijings aid program in the region, accusing it of funding roads to nowhere and useless buildings.

We want to ensure that the infrastructure that you do build is actually productive and is actually going to give some economic benefit or some sort of health benefit, she said.

Foreign minister Julie Bishop was more diplomatic, saying that Australia welcomes investment in developing nations in the Pacific that supports sustainable economic growth, and which does not impose onerous debt burdens on regional governments.

Yet there is concern that Australia and its Western allies may be ceding their traditional leadership role in the South Pacific due to a combination of aid cutbacks and increasing Chinese interest in the dozen or so nations in the region.

According to the Lowy Institute, an Australian research outfit, China extended about US$209 million of aid annually to nine Pacific countries Fiji, Timor Leste, Papua New Guinea, Samoa, Tonga, Niue, Cook Islands, Vanuatu and the Federated States of Micronesia in 2006-16.

Canberra gives about US$870 million a year, or 60% of all global aid sent to the Pacific. New Zealand gives US$235 million and the United States US$221 million. But China will likely soon become the second biggest source of aid, as New Zealand and the US are both reducing their aid in real terms.

US President Donald Trumps administration reportedly plans to slash US assistance by as much as one-third this year, with East Asia and the Pacific receiving 41.4% less. Assuming the policy is implemented, Timor Leste, Micronesia and the Marshall Islands will lose their entire aid and Papua New Guinea 66.4%.

New Zealands foreign minister Winston Peters said in early February that his countrys aid program has been under-funded for nine years and has slipped to 0.23% of gross national income, against an average of 0.4% for Organisation...

13:09

Australian woman hospitalised after vicious attack during burglary in Tonga "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

Tonga Police. Photo/Kalino Lt
An Australian woman has been taken to hospital after a vicious assault in Fhefa, Tongatapu yesterday Sunday 18.

The suspects were still at large.

Police said two men entered the house where the woman and her husband lived.

They allegedly hit the womans head with a rock. The attack was interrupted by the husband who arrived back home to find his wife had been brutally attacked.

The intruders took off with two liquor bottles, a Police spokesperson told Kaniva News.

Nukunuku Police arrived at the scene and took the woman to hospital, Police said.

Police believed they knew the suspects and they were still searching for them.

Police said claims on Facebook that the woman was a member of the Australian Humanitarian and Relief assistance teams who arrived in Tonga after tropical cyclone Gita, was incorrect.

Kaniva News

13:05

Tongan farmers hit hard by Cyclone Gita "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

A week ago, Tongans were bracing themselves for what was to be the most destructive cyclone in the island's history.

But amid concerns around health and housing, officials now fear for the country's agricultural sector, which took a massive hit during the storm.

David Soaki has farmed his land since the 1980s, growing watermelon, squash and peanuts. He lost 80 percent of his crops - and thousands of dollars - when Cyclone Gita passed through. 

He told Newshub the loss was very, very bad.

I think it will take six months to recover because we will have to replant, and it'll take another three months for harvesting.

Soaki has hired children from the evacuation centre his family are living in. They've been tasked with collecting the watermelons that haven't gone rotten, and taking them to the market in the hopes of making some money.

Some 80 percent of Tongan households are involved in agriculture, and it remains a key driver of the economy. When Cyclone Gita passed through earlier this week, it wiped out crop farms right across the country.

Farmers will take a long time to bounce back - a concern also shared by the national emergency management office.

We're hoping that we can buy some of this food for these people which will give them some money to continue on with rebuilding their farms, Graham Kenna told Newshub. 

Soaki is hoping for a change of fortune.

[I'm] very worried because I have watermelon I'm supposed to be harvesting, but now it's rotten because of a lot of rain, and I will see what I can do just to cover the costs.

Almost a week on from the cyclone, power is starting to be restored to parts of Nuku'alofa and the town water supply is running once again.

But while progress is being made on the streets of the capital, it's going to be a long time before the people of Tonga get their lives back to normal.

SOURCE: NEWSHUB/PACNEWS

13:04

South Pacific looks to China as West turns away "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

By Alan Boyd

China is quietly filling the breach as traditional Western donors cut back on their aid pledges to the South Pacific. And it seems many of the struggling island nations on the receiving end of Chinas largesse couldnt be happier with the shifting currents.

Last month, Australias International Development Minister Concetta Fierravanti-Wells scathingly attacked Beijings aid program in the region, accusing it of funding roads to nowhere and useless buildings.

We want to ensure that the infrastructure that you do build is actually productive and is actually going to give some economic benefit or some sort of health benefit, she said.

Foreign Minister Julie Bishop was more diplomatic, saying that Australia welcomes investment in developing nations in the Pacific that supports sustainable economic growth, and which does not impose onerous debt burdens on regional governments.

Yet there is concern that Australia and its Western allies may be ceding their traditional leadership role in the South Pacific due to a combination of aid cutbacks and increasing Chinese interest in the dozen or so nations in the region.

According to the Lowy Institute, an Australian research outfit, China extended about US$209 million of aid annually to nine Pacific countries Fiji, Timor Leste, Papua New Guinea, Samoa, Tonga, Niue, Cook Islands, Vanuatu and the Federated States of Micronesia in 2006-2016.

Canberra gives about US$870 million a year, or 60% of all global aid sent to the Pacific. New Zealand gives US$235 million and the United States US$221 million. But China will likely soon become the second biggest source of aid, as New Zealand and the US are both reducing their aid in real terms.

US President Donald Trumps administration reportedly plans to slash US assistance by as much as one-third this year, with East Asia and the Pacific receiving 41.4% less. Assuming the policy is implemented, Timor Leste, Micronesia and the Marshall Islands will lose their entire aid and Papua New Guinea 66.4%.

New Zealands Foreign Minister Winston Peters said in early February that his countrys aid program has been under-funded for nine years and has slipped to 0.23% of gross national income, against an average of 0.4% for Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) members. It is being reviewed, but prospects for a sharp boost in Pacific aid are slim.

...

09:23

Singirok on Gun Control in Papua New Guinea "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

Chairman of the Guns Control Committee former Commander of the PNG Defence Force Major-General (retired) Jerry Singirok said the government needs to invest heavily on border security in Papua New Guinea.

Mr Singirok was the Chairman of the Guns Control Committee set up in 2005 to come up with recommendation to address issues on guns violence in the country.

Two hundred and forty-four recommendations were made by the guns committee however nothing been done to addressed the recommendations by the Government.

Mr Singirok said stringent control measures should be taken by the government at entry points such as our borders to monitor and curb the entry of these deadly weapons.

Mr Singirok was speaking on the NBC's Morning- Tru show today, Tuesday the 20th of February, 2018.

"The other biggest issue that I need to tell the public is that we have a border security problem.

The government has not invested much in security forces to give them the ability to ensure that the border control is enforced, for example, at Wutung, Batas the Indonesian check point is the weakest, weakest point.

NBC News

08:21

Open letter to Morobe Governor Ginson Saonu about assault on journalist "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

LN_Ginson-Soanu_00Dear Governor Ginson Saonu,

Your Project Officer who claims to be the Chief of Staff  showed that he was incapable of mature thought. He is a joke.

In short, em bagarapim name blo yu when he assaulted Post Courier Journalist, Frankiy Kapin.

We know that your people have been trying your hardest to have the charges dropped.  Parties associated with your office tried to bribe the journalist. They included a LLG president.

Is that how Governor Ginson Saonu operates?  If not, tell them to stop.

Your Project Officer was boastful  and stupid.  He said things that divide and not unite Morobeans.  In case you did not hear, here are Steven Botings claims:

  • The office of the Governor has police officers that he controls.
  • Former Governor, Kelly Naru and Deputy Governor, Judas Nalau bribe journalists
  • And that journalists are on Kelly Narus payroll.

This is a transcript of what he said on Saturday.

MIPLA NO HAMAMAS LO RIPOTA YA. MIPLA AWONG MAHN YA. SAMPLA SAMTING EM SA RIPOTIM LO NIUS PEPA YA. EM NO SA HARIM GUT STORY NA EM SA RIPOTIMMIPLA BELHAT NA STAP.

 

EM NO NIU AILAN, FUCK EM MOR...

06:07

Increase observers on boats : Basil "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

Papua New Guinea Communication and Information Technology and Energy Minister Sam Basil suggests the National Fisheries Authority (NFA) increase the number of observers onboard tuna fishing vessels from one to two.

Basil told Parliament on Friday that the current arrangement of placing only one observer on a vessel remained a concern.

I support the concerns raised by the governor for East Sepik regarding the disappearance of observers (four), he said.

This is a serious issue right now and will be an ongoing issue.

Basil said the observers were exposed to many things.

The boat that they were on, these foreign fishing vessels, have licences that come with certain conditions and there are laws governing their operations, he said.

Sometimes these foreign vessels have bi-catches, catching some of the fish species and marine animals that are not allowed in their licence.

Sometimes, they do transhipment on the high seas without NFA knowledge.

Basil said for an observer to fight against trans-shipment, it was a matter of some millions of dollars.
You can see the danger he (observer) is in.

Thats why I think it is important that we need to pay serious attention to it (observer safety) immediately and we must put at least two observers on board a foreign fishing vessel..

SOURCE: THE NATIONAL/PACNEWS

05:04

People moves: United Nations, KPMG "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

A new Country Representative for the UN in PNG, Senior Taxation appointment at KPMG

The new United Nations Resident Coordinator for PNG is Gianluca Rampolla, replacing Roy Trivedy, who has held the post since November, 2013. Prior to his appointment as the highest-ranking UN Official in PNG, Rampolla served in several UN field assignments in Africa, Europe and the UNs headquarters in New York.

***

Karen McEntee has been appointed the new head of KPMGs Taxation Service line in Papua New Guinea. She began her career 20 years ago with KPMG in Ireland.

The post People moves: United Nations, KPMG appeared first on Business Advantage PNG.

04:47

In brief: Public debt stands at 31.9 per cent of GDP, and other business stories "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

Total public debt stands at K23.5 billion, review of gun licences for private security firms likely, and Peoples Micro Bank to be commercialised later this year. Your weekly digest of the latest business news.

Total public debt stands at K23.5 billion as at the end of 2017 representing 31.9 per cent of gross domestic product, according to the 2017 final budget outcome tabled in Parliament by Treasury Minister Charles Abel. The figure is an increase of K1.6 billion or 7.4 per cent over 2016 levels. He said the 2017 outcome showed total revenue and grants at K11.2 billion and total expenditure and net lending at K12.9 billion, adding: This translates to a budget deficit of K1.7 billion or 2.3 per cent of GDP.

***

Police Minister Jelta Wong has indicated the government is likely to review firearm licences for private security firms in PNG, after a public shootout in a busy supermarket in Port Moresby last week involving two foreign security guards. Wong said police will now move in to confiscate all firearms owned by the security firm.

***

The NDBs Moses Liu.

The Managing Director of the National Development Bank, Moses Liu, has reportedly told employees that he expects the Peoples Micro Bank Limited to be a fully fledged commercial bank this year. He also said a discussion on commercialising the NDB was ruled out in favour of commercialising the PMB.

***

Bougainville Copper Ltd is seeking a judicial review of the Bougainville Governments moratorium on mining at...

03:36

Vanuatu tourism executives see co-operation with Papua New Guinea and Fiji as the way to capture the China market "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

Vanuatu tourism officials want a joint approach with Papua New Guinea and Fiji to develop the lucrative inbound Chinese tourism market. With Vanuatu still recovering from the effects of 2013s Cyclone Pam, Business Advantage PNG asks key industry figures how the Melanesian country is preparing to capture the China market.

The new Ramada Resort in Port Vila. Source: Ramada

We are looking at the China market, like everyone else is, says George Iapson, Chair of the Vanuatu Investment Promotion Authority. Were hoping to get flights directly from mainland China, either Southern China or Shanghai.

We need to piggyback on the Air Niugini move into the Chinese route development [PNGs national airline is scheduled to start flying to Shanghai later this year] and theres a real possibility we can move into the Asia market through PNG. That process has started.

...

03:36

Five questions for: James Movick, Director-General, Pacific Islands Forum Fisheries Agency "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

Control of foreign fishing vessels in international waters is the biggest threat to the South Pacific tuna industry, according to James Movick, Director-General, Pacific Islands Forum Fisheries Agency. He tells Business Advantage PNG that plans to increase aerial surveillance will help detect illegal fishing.

Business Advantage PNG (BAPNG): How would you describe the state of the tuna fishing industry in the South Pacific?

Forum Fisheries Agencys James Movick warns the tuna industry is at risk.

James Movick (JM): Tuna is by far the biggest fishery in terms of catches and catch values for the region. The good news is that all of the four major tuna stocksskipjack, yellowfin, albacore and bigeyeare being fished sustainably.

None of the main stocks, according to the scientists, is being overfished.

The bad news is that longline fisheries, which mainly target high value tuna for sashimi, are facing difficult economic conditions and falling catch rates. This has had a very negative impact on many domestic fishing companies in Pacific Island countries.

BAPNG: Whats the biggest influence in determining the state of the industry?

JM: Maintaining the sustainability of the stocks is obviously the key to securing a fishery that will continue to provide benefits for Pacific Island people into the future and is the top priority of FFA and its member countries.

However, biological sustainability is not always enough to ensure a viable fishing industry; this depends on catch rates, global tuna prices, fuel costs etc.

At the moment, the purse seine fishery is generally profitable; the longline fishery is a lot less viable.

The biggest single threat to the tuna fishery is the lack of control of mainly foreign vessels operating on the high seas.

When fishing in our 200-mile Exclusive Economic Zones (EEZs), they are subject to regulation and a robust fishery management regime;...

03:05

Releasing customary land for housing essential as state land runs out, says NRI "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

House prices still remain out of reach for most Port Moresby residents, according to a report by Papua New Guineas National Research Institute. It says that changing the approach to customary land has become necessary because state land is running out.

Sales of property in Port Moresby. Source: NRI

Although house sales and rent prices have decreased, they are still beyond the reach of most Port Moresby residents because the decrease is not proportional to the increase during the construction phase of the PNG LNG project, according to the report, which was authored by Eugene Ezebilo, Program Leader of the Property Development Program at the National Research Institute (NRI).

Currently, many houses are vacant in the historical medium-income areas and the Central Business District (CBD). Most residents cannot afford to buy or rent houses there and have moved to low-income areas such as Gerehu, which is now booming in real estate activities.

With state land almost exhausted, the attention has now shifted to customary land.

Ezebilo argues that there should be more effort by the government to unlock secure customary land for development.

Access to customary land has been a long-standing issue in PNG and requires urgent attention. With state land almost exhausted, the attention has now shifted to customary land.

Legislative changes?

...

01:38

The PNG 100 CEO Survey 2018: Papua New Guineas chief executives remain optimistic "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

Business Advantages PNG 100 CEO Survey of chief executives in Papua New Guineas biggest companies has found that profit expectations were only partly met last year, but there are signs of growing confidence in 2018.

This is the seventh year that Business Advantage PNG has run the PNG 100 CEO Surveyour exclusive survey of the executives who run PNGs largest companies.

Each year, the survey aims to reveal current levels of business confidence by asking CEOs about their anticipated profit levels and expectations for investment and recruitment in the year ahead2018. We also ask them to rank the key issues they face in their business.

Profit performance in 2017 versus expectations. Source: PNG 100 CEO Survey/Business Advantage International

Profits patchy

Twelve months ago, when we asked the CEOs what their profit expectations were for 2016, they were mostly optimistic...

00:07

Nautilus Minerals says it doesnt know very much at all "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

According to Nautilus Minerals, although it has successfully tested its mining machines in a giant puddle, there is an awful lot it does NOT know about its proposed Solwara 1, experimental seabed mine in Papua New Guinea.

Indeed, it is hard to find anything the company does know with any certainty.

Nautilus Minerals admits it does not know:

1. If its mining machines will work on the seafloor

Nautilus says there are risks relating to the performance of the Seafloor Production Tools include the risk of equipment failing to perform to design specifications when operated at the Solwara 1 Project, as the machines have not yet been tested at depths similar to depths present at the Solwara 1 Project.

2. If it can raise the money it needs to even start mining

The risks related...

Go Back:30 Days | 7 Days | 2 Days | 1 Day

IndyWatch New Guinea News Feed Today.

Go Forward:1 Day | 2 Days | 7 Days | 30 Days

Monday, 19 February

23:19

Schram fightback: No presumption of innocence; biased process "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

Albert-Schram
Dr Schram - "What just happened to me is a clear breach of due process"

ALBERT SCHRAM

LAE - On 15 February, the Council of the Papua New Guinea University of Technology decided to terminate my services, and gave me and my wife seven days to ship out and leave our residence on campus where we have lived more than six years.

On 19 January I was given a mere seven days to answer the allegations and I managed to hand in my answers, though incomplete, before the deadline.

I returned to campus from an engagement elsewhere with my wife on 23 January and that same day Acting Vice Chancellor Dr Ora Renagi wrote that I should stay away from the office.

I was also denied an extension of time to prepare myself and I was not given access to important files regarding this case in the Registry and Bursary.

Council itself acknowledged that the main ground for dismissal was that I allegedly did not present a certified copy of my original doctoral degree from the European University Institute. Here is a link to this on the Institutes website.

This had been a condition for my contract renewal in 2015. In an email dated 13 January 2015, I had requested the renowned European University Institute, established by an international treaty, to send me two hard copies of these credentials, one to my office in Lae and one to Cairns.

Upon receiving the document in Lae, I handed it to the Registrar. The other original I kept. Why would I do otherwise and self-sabotage? And why was this matter not brought up by the Registrar when later, on 26 August 2016, I submitted myself to the annual performance assessment, which lasted a whole day and was supported by an independent consultant?

I was interrogated by the Council last Thursday without being told I was to receive the decision of the Council, had to answer questions or was allowed to give a presentation. I did not know what was going to happen.

At no stage in this process, which started in October 2017, did Acting Chancellor Jean Kekedo ensu...

22:51

Backlash to Schram dismissal grows as documents emerge "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

Schram thesis
The verification of Dr Schram's PhD award is on the internet - one allegation against him is that he has not produced his credentials

KEITH JACKSON

NOOSA The dismissal of Dr Albert Schram from his vice-chancellors position at the University of Technology has resulted in a backlash from Papua New Guineans who believe he has been treated unjustly.

And it has also led to the publication of documents that appear to vindicate his argument that the claims against him are exaggerated.

In PNG Attitude on Sunday there were conflicting accounts of the reasons for his termination presented by Dr Schram and the Unitech Council.

A Council meeting last Thursday decided to dismiss the vice-chancellor and gave him just seven days to settle his affairs at the Lae campus.

The controversy has led to a flood of comment to PNG Attitude as readers engage with both sides of the controversy.

Some people have been shocked by the allegations against Dr Schram while others believe he has been subjected to a kangaroo court which has distorted the evidence against him.

One of these is notable Papua New Guinean writer and commentator Martyn Namorong, who has published a copy of Dr Schrams PhD credentials on social media.

The first allegation against the dismissed vice-chancellor was that he had not provided verified academic credentials, so the revelation of the transcript of his credentials from an independent source is a serious blow to the allegations against him.

Despite the defamatory statements made by the Unitech Council against Schram, the evidence supports him, Mr Namorong said. All the Unitech Council had to do was Google the evidence.

The transcript shows that Dr Schram completed a PhD at the European University Institute in Florence,.....

22:47

Four Mining Exploration Licences Issued for Bougainville "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

Bougainville is open to any investor who want to come and do business

Post Courier | February 18, 2018

Secretary for Bougainville Mineral and Energy Resources Shadrach Himata says a total of four mining explorations licences have been issued to date.

Mr Himata said companies from Australia, Canada, and the Philippines have taken up interest in the exploration of various areas in Bougainville upon the request of landowner groups.

We have a company from Australia, Canadians interested, and the Filipinos who are interested in exploration, Mr Himata said.

Right now we have issued four exploration licences in the Tore area in North Bougainville and the Central Bougainville is the Isina area.

The Filipino company, SR Metals, are interested in doing exploration in the eastern part of Isina area in Central Bougainville.

He said on the northern part of the Tore...

22:26

Why history and art argue against a total ivory ban "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

Guardian

Ivory tells the history of the world it must never be banned

Jonathan Jones

UK legislation to ban ivory products from across history would criminalise some of the greatest art the world has seen. We need reason, not passion, in the fight against poaching

Thu 16 Feb 2017 16.18 GMT

Last modified on Wed 14 Feb 2018 17.16 GMT

A delicate and subtle artistic masterpiece front cover plaques from the Lorsch Gospels

The cover of the Lorsch Gospels is one of the most unexpected beauties in any of our museums. This yellowish-white carving comes from the depths of the dark ages, when Europe was supposedly a primitive and barbaric place yet it is a delicate and subtle artistic masterpiece.

It was made in Aachen, Germany, in about 810 to protect a splendid illuminated manuscript produced at the court of the Emperor Charlemagne. Its harmonious design, symmetrical arches, putti and robed figures cleverly emulate the lost splendour of ancient Rome a splendour Charlemagne longed to restore. In the lowest panel, the infant Christ lies in a manger watched over by an ox and ass in one of the earliest nativity scenes in art. This tender portrayal has a loving humanity that communicates directly with us across the centuries.

Prince William charity urges UK to back ivory trade ban

Read more

And it could become illegal in Britain. Under new rules being seriously considered by the government, if a work of this age and quality came on to the market, no British museum or private collector would be allowed to buy it. How long will it be, if this legislation is introduced, before campaigners take the next logical step and call for treasures such as the Lorsch Gospels cover to be taken off display, or even destroyed, like the obscenities they supposedly are?

For this early medieval wonder was carved from elephant ivory. Under new rules, it is illegal in Britain to trade in ivory objects made since 1947, a totally proper and necessary measure against the modern ivory trade and its incitement of ivory poaching. Yet campaigners including the World Wildlife Fund, Tusk and the Duke of Cambridge insist that doesnt go far enough. Illegal ivory traders can forge pre-1947 antiques, they claim, in calling for a total ban on all trade in ivory objects. Unbelievably,...

22:12

Message from Tavolo villagers to Government: We did not sign SABL agreements "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

Pepetua Marangona, Tavolo village, Pomio

Source: Scott Waide, My Land, My Country

Tavolo village in Pomio, East New Britain, is a place not many in Waigani know about.

Its tucked away along a patch of sandy beaches in between rocky shorelines that mark the border of East and West New Britain.

The people go on with their lives knowing very well not to expect any help from the National or provincial government. On the maps held by the Department of Agriculture and Livestock, Tavolo is part of a Special Agriculture Business Lease (SABL) in the Melkoi Local Level Government area.

Those who are pushing for the SABL to be implemented on Tavolo land, have probably had no contact at all with the people who own 18,000 hectares of land. They dont understand the peoples aspirations and they will probably defend the SABLs as a sound development option needed for the Tavolo people.

The Tavolo community is small. They have a population of 600 men women and children.

The ward councillor, Peter Kikeleng and another senior community member, Pepetua Marangona, asked me to take their message to those who authorised the Melkoi SABL.

The people dont want a 99-year Special Agriculture Business Lease over their land. They dont want the logging and the oil palm that is expected to come with it. They say that if any development is to come, they must remain in control of their land and that they have to receive direct benefits from the project NOT the crumbs.

When the police come, they beat the landowners because we speak out a lot about  land issues, she says in Tok Pisin. What answers does the government have for the shortage of land that we will face?

They have seen the situation in Pomio where large tracts of land have been logged and land taken away from customary landowners through SABLs.   They know about the communities that are being broken by the greed and court battles against each other.

They dont want that....

21:45

Schram wants to continue to make a positive impact in PNG "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"


by ALBERT SCHRAM

On 15 February, the Council of the Papua New Guinea University of Technology (PNGUoT) decided to terminate my services, and gave me and my wife 7 days to ship out, and leave our residence on campus, where we have lived more than 6 years.

On 19 January I was given a mere 7 days to answer the allegations, and I managed to hand in my answers though incomplete before the deadline. I returned on campus from an engagement elsewhere with my wife on 23 January, and that same day the Acting Vice Chancellor Dr. Ora Renagi wrote
that I should stay away from the office. I was also denied an extension to prepare myself, and neither was I given access to important files in the Registry and Bursary regarding this case.

Council itself, however, acknowledged that the main ground for dismissal was that allegedly I did not present a certified copy of my original doctoral degree from the European University Institute. Here is a link to my thesis on the Institutes website http://cadmus.eui.eu//handle/1814/5972. This had been a
condition for my contract renewal in 2015. In an email dated 13 January 2015, I requested the renowned European University Institute, established by an international treaty, to send me two hard copies, one to my office in Lae and one to Cairns. Upon receiving the document in Lae, I handed it over to the Registrar. The other original I kept. Why would I do otherwise and self-sabotage
myself? And, why was this matter not brought up by the Registrar when later on 26 August 2016 I submitted myself to the Annual Performance Assessment, which lasted one whole day and was supported by an independent consultant?

I was interrogated by Council on 15 February, but without being told previously whether I was just to receive the decision of the council, had to answer questions or was allowed to give a presentation. I did not know what was going to happen. At no stage in this process, which started in October 2017, did the Acting Chancellor Jean Kekedo ensure I was involved in or consulted over Council proceedings? An investigation was launched, without a Council resolution and without my involvement. As a result, only convenient information was included in the report. Sam Koim reputedly is specialised in
fighting corruption, but he has no experience with the operation of a large organization or the running of a University. This is a clear breach of due process.

When crucial physical evidenc...

20:27

As Indonesia gears up for elections, activists brace for an environmental sell-off "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

JAKARTA Environmental issues in Indonesia will once again be both bargaining chip and valuable stake this year as the country prepares to hold sweeping elections, according to an environmental outlook released last month by the countrys main environmental watchdog, the Indonesian Forum for the Environment (Walhi). Voters in the worlds third-largest democracy will head to the polls in June to vote for 17 provincial governors, 115 district heads and 39 mayors. Up for grabs: control of natural resource-rich regions, including in Indonesian Borneo, Sumatra and Papua. Elections at the local level in Indonesia have long been marred by corruption: business lobbies bribe their favored candidates with the expectation of a quid pro quo once in office; incumbents engage in pork-barrel programs and blatant vote-buying schemes; and in each region, the promise to permit the plunder of natural resources timber, coal, land, water forms a central part of each candidates platform. In this political year, there will be a great amount of money circulating, says Even Sembiring, the policy assessment manager at Walhi. So we have to remain alert. An illegally logged tree in Central Kalimantan, Indonesian Borneo. Habitat loss played a critical role in reducing rhino populations, but most experts now believe the species low birth rate is a more pressing problem. Photo by Rhett A. Butler/Mongabay. Decentralizing corruption A key aspect of Indonesias vibrant, if imperfect, democracy is the decentralization of power from Jakarta to the regions, introduced after the downfall in 1998 of the late dictator

20:00

Unless people show more spirit, is this goodbye PNG, hello Africa? "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

Octopus Kracken Teacup pottery sculpture by Face Jug Maker GraftonPHIL FITZPATRICK

TUMBY BAY - Everything appears to be going to hell in a teacup. Economy spiralling out of control. Government borrowing money to pay interest on other borrowings. Rock bottom on every economic and social indicator the world compiles.

Massive and uncontrolled exploitation of non-renewable resources by ravenous multinational corporations - the nations future seemingly for sale. Precious millions of kina spent hosting frivolous and irrelevant international conferences and sporting events to boost the ego of the elite.

Major infrastructure falling apart. Hospitals deprived of essential drugs and equipment. Long eradicated diseases re-appearing. Drugs and alcohol laying waste to young people. Schools without books, teachers and classrooms. Public servants without pay. Well educated people without work.

The police and military corrupted. The judiciary compromised. Law and order out of control. Criminal gangs infiltrating government. Gun control non-existent. The fraud directorate denied funds to pursue the corrupt. Fishing and logging inspectors disappearing in the pursuit of their duties. Suppression of the media and attacks on journalists.

Brutal and primitive beliefs in sorcery and cults escalating. Women and girls openly brutalised.

Every facet of public life corrupted beyond reason and imagination. Routine government services and projects exploited by predatory public servants and politicians. Dirty money laundered overseas through property and other assets (with the help of Australian financial institutions). Elections rigged to retain power and keep the money flowing to people unworthy of public office.

And it seems nobody cares enough to do anything but talk about it. A cowardly and impotent elite shrugs its shoulders and retreats into its comfortable shells.

Its a big list and it grows worse day by miserable day.

Is this the end of a bold experiment, the end of time for a nation that promised so much but seems to have failed so miserably?

Is this the Africanisation of a Pacific nation, the beginning of dictatorship and totalitarian rule by puppets whose strings are pulled by the savage beasts of greed and oppression?

Cant those with the power...

19:01

Bring forth their downfall "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

David-and-goliath1DOMINICA ARE

We have a just and fair God
Who loves what is right and true
He looks upon us with compassion
He sees how pitiful, restless and helpless we are

The wicked sitting above
ignore the sufferings down below
watch with amusement the relentless dramas
He sits way above them His heart aching
To see the poor crying
To see the just shed blood for justice
To see the faithful plead for mercy
To see the innocent dying

With our hearts full of patience, hope and courage
We continue the fight for justice
incessantly fight for what we believe in
To Him, our pleas dont go unheard
We believe that soon, sadness will turn to joy
That soon the just will trample the wicked
That soon the wicked will pay for their transgressions
We believe that soon their riches will turn to rags

We keep the faith that things will be better
We acclaim His saving justice
Our just God hears His peoples cry
He will come to our aid

No one, oh no one, on this Earth
Is greater than Him
Hes everywhere
He knows everything
The wicked wont escape His wrath

With Him on our side
We shall bring those Goliaths down
They will stagger from their high benches and fall
Oh, how terrible will their downfall be

18:00

Highly recommended: A family cruise to Papua New Guinea "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

Arriving-in-papua-new-guinea
Papua New Guinea landfall - Pacific Eden docks at Alotau

DAWN NICHOLSON | P&O Cruise Review

SYDNEY - Our kids have been bugging us for a couple of years now to do a cruise, but it wasnt until we found P&Os Papua New Guinea cruise itineraries that we finally booked one.

The kids had seen cruise ships throughout our travels and were absolutely taken with the on-board activities and luxurious ships.

When I discovered that we could cruise to Papua New Guinea, a country I never thought we would ever visit, I was hooked.

I grew up with an intense interest in other cultures.  I devoured National Geographic magazines, took anthropology classes in university and sought out remote areas on our travels. 

The idea of visiting untouched islands with rich, tribal cultures straight out of those anthropology textbooks was incredibly alluring for me.  Especially since we could do that and experience our first cruise together as a family, making the kids happy too.

PNG is actually quite close to Australia and yet it is only just coming on the scene as a cruise destination. Its beautiful tropical islands with white sand beaches and near pristine underwater world make it an amazing destination.

Add in the opportunity to visit remote islands and learn about the tribal ways of life and you have a really unique holiday.

We have visited over 50 countries on our travels and PNG was absolute magic.  We felt incredibly welcomed by the local population and feel so lucky to have had the opportunity to visit.

One of the things I love about cruising is it allows you to see a wide variety of places on your holiday.  It is so exciting to wake up each morning to a new destination to discover.  You get all the features that you would at a luxurious resort, but every day is a new place.

There are so many fun things for kids to do on cruise ships and our kids loved meeting friends at the Kids Club. We had lots of time together as a family, but we also had some nice qualit...

10:54

Commissioner Gamato announces the 2018 LLG Election Schedule "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

Electoral Commissioner Patilias Gamato has officially announced the program for the 2018 Local-level Government Elections.

Minister for Inter-Government Relations Kevin Isifu has approved the dates for the conduct of the LLG elections on February 7, 2018.

Mr. Gamato outlines the 2018 LLG Elections program as follows:

Issue of Writs & Nominations Open:- Thursday, 26 July, 2018
Close of Nominations:- Wednesday, 1 August, 2018
Start of Polling:- Monday, 20 August, 2018
End of Polling:- Monday, 3 September, 2018
Return of Writs on or before:- Monday, 24 September, 2018

In terms of preparations, he said that PNGEC has already started preparation work for the conduct of the LLG elections.

Commissioner Gamato meantime clarified that confusion surrounding the election of LLG presidents in the 2018 LLG elections.

The National Executive Council in December 2015 had approved by way of a Cabinet decision that Ward Members will elect LLG presidents in their respective legislative assemblies.

That decision still stands. And unless theres a change in the decision, PNGEC will conduct one election for the Ward Members in the 2018 LLG elections using the Limited Preferential Voting (LPV) system.

10:47

PNG Media Workers Association condemns attack on Journalist "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

The Papua New Guinea Media Workers Association (PNGMWA) is extremely disappointed that Mr.Franky Kapin, a Journalist with Post Courier was assaulted by staff from the Office of the Governor of Morobe Province.
PNGMWA is very angry and we call on the Governor of Morobe to immediately sack the person(s) responsible. A high office that requires integrity such as the Office of the Governor of the Province must first learn to respect the people it serves, including Journalists who perform what is essentially a public/community service of disseminating information. Such office must employ people with integrity. NOT PEOPLE who lack understanding of their roles and whose actions are primitive and may bring the high office into disrepute.
Journalists play a vital role in ensuring news and events are reported for public consumption. This role is protected by the Constitution, so as the publics right to information. Media reports are, more often than not, based on the information that is available to the Journalist at that time. If you are aggrieved by a media report, there are proper and established processes to air your grievances, including demanding retraction and/or apology and even restitution through the Courts. Furthermore, you as an aggrieved person have the right to be heard and Journalists are there to facilitate that. In fact this is possibly the most civilized and democratic way the truth can be established.
PNGMWA therefore condemns the action by the staff from the Morobe Governors Office. PNGMWA also commends Mr. Kapin for reporting the matter to the Police. We must work with the relevant authorities, including the Police to put a stop to this kind of behaviour. To this end, we demand that the Police arrest and charge the person(s) responsible. We also demand the Court to ensure the Journalist be appropriately compensated for the physical and mental harm that he has been put through.
PNGMWA also supports the Media Statement by the PNG Media Council.

10:00

My best friend "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

By Samad Abdul Thats such a moment of blessing when you are with your best friend but thats such a horrible moment when friends get separated forever. Being detained without any guilt in Manus prison camp where each day is equal to a month, every month is equal to a year and each year is equal

The post My best friend appeared first on The AIM Network.

07:00

Solomon Islands becomes first Melanesian country to publish public enterprise performance results online "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

In a first for Melanesia, financial results and other key information from Solomon Islands $230 million state-owned enterprise (SOE) portfolio can now be viewed online.

A website launched by the Government of Solomon Islands today provides profiles of each of the countrys eight SOEs featuring their financial performance, board members, and links to relevant legislation, as well as the overall performance of Solomon Islands SOE portfolio. The website, developed with the support of the Asian Development Banks (ADB) Pacific Private Sector Development Initiative (PSDI), makes this information readily available to the public for the first time.

This initiative is part of an ongoing program to reform Solomon Islands state-owned enterprises portfolio, which has seen it become one of the best performing in the region, said Emma Fan, Regional Director of ADBs Pacific Liaison and Coordination Office. This website demonstrates the Government of Solomon Islands commitment to transparency and accountability, which we are seeing reflected elsewhere in the Pacific as more countries commit to making key information about their public enterprises available online.

Harry Kuma, Permanent Secretary of Finance and Treasury, launched the website, which can be found at http://www.pacificsoedata.org/solomon-islands/

PSDI is assisting three other Pacific countries to establish similar websites and also supported Tonga with the launch of its SOE information portal in April last year.

Solomon Islands has achieved a dramatic improvement in the performance of its SOE portfolio since 2009 and is now the most profitable in the Pacific. Between 2010 and 2014, it produced an average return of assets of 6.7% and an average return on equity of 10%, far higher than neighboring countries.

PSDI is a technical assistance facility undertaken in partnership with the governments of Australia and New Zealand, and ADB. It works with ADB's 14 Pacific developing member countries to improve the enabling environment for business and to support inclusive, private sector-led economic growth.

ADB, based in Manila, is dedicated to reducing poverty in Asia and the Pacific through inclusive economic growth, environmentally sustainable growth, and regional integration. Established in 1966, it is owned by 67 members48 from the region.

SOURCE: ADB/PACNEWS

06:59

PNG name team to defend Commonwealth Rugby League 9s title "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

A 20 man squad for the Commonwealth Rugby League Games has been named following the successful PNG Super 9s tournament held in Goroka over the weekend.

PNGRFL Chairman Sandis Tsaka said the squad will be trimmed down to 15 before the team travels to Brisbane on Thursday.

The 20 man squad is:

1. Jar Hogan - Goroka Lahanis
2. Jordan Karo - Northern Confederate
3. Nicky Haea - Goroka Lahanis
4. Stafford Talita - Hela Wigmen
5. Yabra Kuk - Simbu Warriors
6. Emmanuel Herea - Gulf Isou
7. John Ragi Jnr - Rabaul Gurias
8. Epel Kapinias - Rabaul Gurias
9. Dickson Amba - Rabaul Gurias
10. Raven Johna - Mt Hagen Eagles
11. Ross Ravu - Gulf Isou
12. Paul Nelson - Hela Wigmen
13. Ilias Stanley - Rabaul Guirias
14. Rex Kaupa - Southern Confederate
15. Jordan Millie - Goroka Lahanis
16. Nemiah Joel - Simbu Warriors
17. Norman Braun - Goroka Lahanis
18. Schwazer Kandaki - Simbu Warriors
19. Joshua Jimmy - Simbu Warriors
20. Chris Taria - Southern Confederate
Coach : Colin Geno Gulf Isou
Assistant Coach / Trainer - Glen Nami

PNG will be defending the Gold Medal won at the last Commonwealth Games in 2014 in Glasgow.

06:53

NZ PM to visit Tonga, Samoa, Niue, and the Cook Islands "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"


New Zealand Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters says the governments Pacific Mission will take place from 4-9 March and travel to Tonga, Samoa, Niue, and the Cook Islands.


It will be an honour to have the Pacific Mission led by the Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern, and is a further sign of the importance New Zealand attaches to our Pacific neighbours, says Peters.

The government carefully considered whether the Pacific Mission would impose a burden on Tonga and Samoa in the wake of Tropical Cyclone Gita.

However the government decided to proceed to allow the delegation to see first-hand the ongoing response. We will also discuss with the governments of Tonga and Samoa, as much as able to be learned at this point, what support is required for long-term recovery, he says.

The Pacific Mission delegation is made up of MPs, Pasifika community leaders, and NGO representatives. The delegation size is smaller this year with the mission changing focus because of Tropical Cyclone Gita.

New Zealands close ties with Samoa and Tonga are built on a deep bilateral partnership, and a shared commitment to Pacific regionalism. Niue and Cook Islands are constitutional partners for New Zealand and we share citizenship as well as a set of mutual obligations and responsibilities, says Peters.

SOURCE: MFAT/PACNEWS

01:42

How SABLs are disrupting communities and creating conflict "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

Source: Scott Waide, My Land, My Country

Chief William Ape Hawa is a straight shooter and a wise old fella who presents me with a shell necklace used as the local currency during important ceremonies. He apologizes for not giving me the gift the day before when I arrived at his Tavolo village on the border of East and West New Britain.

When new visitors come, he says in Tok Pisin, We give them a tanget headdress. That tells you that you shouldnt be afraid or shy. It means you are welcome.

Then before you go, we give you the necklace which means, go in peace.

Chief William speaks with a lot of wisdom and understanding spiced with wicked, truthful humor. He talks a bit about life and marriage of the young and then our conversation leads on to the Special Agriculture Business Leases (SABL) issued by the Government.

Tavolo is in the Melkoi LLG area of Pomio District, East New Britain. For the people here, the term Special Agriculture Business Lease triggers a lot of anger.

What kind of laws do we have? says Chief William. They tell us that our land is part of a SABL and we had no part in that decision!

Like many other SABL areas, other people signed on their behalf.

The Tavolo people who number about 600 own 18 thousand hectares of land. They have no intention of giving up the pristine rainforest over to the Malaysian company that intends to log their land and plant oil palm.

But Chief William and his people are under immense pressure to surrender their land.

There is oil palm development in neighbouring West New Britain. In the next local level government area which includes the district headquarters of Palmalmal, large areas of customary land have been logged out. Landownership is now being disputed in court. Much of trouble has come about because of agreements that were hastily signed.

Over the past 20 years, the people of Tavolo developed a conservation area over the 18 thousand hectares of land. The government recognised this. The decision has come with its benefits. Fish numbers have been rep...

01:21

How the elite profit while a nation suffers their incompetence "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

Port Moresby, a city where the elite profit while the rest suffer the consequences of their incompetence

Imagine a company that is in debt, heavily in debt and still racking up more losses.

Imagine a company that in 2016 alone lost over K354 million.

Imagine a company where the total liabilities exceed the total assets by more than K218 million.

Imagine that this is a company set up by the government to manage a nations interests in its abundant mineral resources.

Now imagine no more and say hello to Kumul Minerals Holdings Limited, formerly Petromin PNG Holdings Limited.

The two numbers above are from Kumul Minerals Holdings latest Annual Return, which is for the 2016 financial year.

How could a company that,...

00:45

Government nets next to nothing from Tolukuma mine sale "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

The government sold the Tolukuma gold mine to a Singapore company, Asidokona, in 2015, for a reported price of K81.35 million. However, Mine Watch can reveal, the government has only ever received K700,000.

Despite Petromins claims Asidokona would invest heavily in the mine infrastructure, a new road and restart production, the whole deal looked dodgy from the very start.

Then Mining Minister, Byron Chan, described Asidokona as reputable, committed but  Asidokona is not a mining company, it is a front for Singaporean speculator, Philip Soh Sai Kiang     .

In 2016 Mine Watch revealed that Asidokona was trying to offload the mine for US$ 212 million to a Singapore nightclub company, LifeBrandz. That deal fell through.

All the while the government has been trying to convince landowners that mining will soon recommence...

00:02

Eye of Papua shines a light on environmental, indigenous issues in Indonesias last frontier "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

Press coverage

Responsible for the article below are author and publication. The
contribution does not necessarily mirror the views of Watch Indonesia!

https://news.mongabay.com/2018/02/eye-of-papua-shines-a-light-on-environmental-indigenous-issues-in-indonesias-last-frontier/

Mongabay Series: Indonesian Forests, 14 February 2018

Eye of Papua shines a light on environmental, indigenous issues in Indonesias last frontier

by Hans Nicholas Jong

For decades the Papua region in Indonesia has remained the countrys least-understood, least-developed and most-impoverished area, amid a lack of transparency fueled by a strong security presence.
Activists hope their new website, Mata Papua, or Eye of Papua, will fill the information void with reports, data and maps about indigenous welfare and the proliferation of mines, logging leases and plantations in one of the worlds last great spans of tropical forest.
Companies, with the encouragement of the government, are fast carving up Papuas land, after having nearly depleted the forests of Sumatra and Indonesian Borneo.

JAKARTA Zely Ariane, an editor at the Tabloid Jubi newspaper in Indonesias easternmost region of Papua, gets frustrated each time an acquaintance travels there and asks to meet up on short notice.

None of them, it seems, realizes just how vast the region is.

My friends always say, Hey, Im in Papua, lets meet up! Zely said in Jakarta recently. But where in Papua, though? If someone was to ask to meet you in Java, theyd surely say where [specifically], no?

The name Papua typically refers to the western half of the island of New Guinea, which is split up into two administrative regions: the provinces of West Papua and Papua. Together, they cover more than 420,000 square kilometers (162,000 square miles) an area the size of California. Crucially, the two provinces account for 35 percent of Indonesias remaining rainforest, spanning 294,000 square kilometers (113,500 square miles).

No one seems to have a good grasp of the geography of Papua, or at least almost no one, Zely said.

This lack of understanding is due in part to the remoteness of the region Indonesias least developed and most impoverished and its harsh mountainous terrain, as well as to the security response to a low-level separatist insurgency simmering since the 1960s. The military and police have for decades maintained a strong presence...

Sunday, 18 February

23:46

Nautilus Minerals working with ghosts "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

Nautilus Minerals has been going through a rough time recently, so rough the company is now claiming to be working in partnership with a ghost, a company that no longer exists.

Nautilus Minerals wants to be the first to mine the seabed, but has been on financial life support since last year, unable to raise the $300 million it needs to complete its preparations for mining. In the meantime it is being kept alive only by a series of short-term loans from its major shareholders.

To make matters worse, in November last year, the company supposed to be supplying the mining support vessel, the key piece of infrastructure for a seabed mining operation, cut off funding for the ship build.

With no money and no ship and forced to close its Papua New Guinea offices, perhaps it is no surprise senior staff have started bailing too. First, Chairman Russell Debney, on December 27...

23:30

Sea mining project off Papua New Guinea hits choppy waters "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

The worlds first sea-mining project will go ahead despite unknown environmental and social consequences and uncertain profits.

22:49

Abuses in Foreign Missions "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"


The PM recently instituted an Audit into the operations of one of the Foreign Missions allegedly for disposing of state property without complying with due processes as stipulated under the Financial Management Act (FMA), Public Service Management Act (PSMA) and the Foreign Service Manual of Operations and other related guidelines.

This disposition and the subsequent audit carried out, as they say is Only the tip of the iceberg. Whilst waiting for the outcome of the audit, let us scrutinize some of the conduct of our Foreign Missions and its Officers at Post. The PNG Embassy in Manila Philippines will be in the uppermost list in official corrupt practices, abuse and mismanagement, especially of funds, allocated and funds generated through its Consular Services i.e. visa and Immigration services fees etc.

From the Ambassador down to all staff, each has a fair share of misuse and abuse. The Ambassador and his staff have no regard for the existence of the FMA & PSMA and the need to report to FA on its operations. Because the Ambassador is abusing his official position of trust, all officers want to have a fair share in this malpractice. It is alleged that a former officer of the Embassy has abused more than K500, 000.00 while serving there.

The Officer is alleged to have used the money for his/her over-aged children school fees and another extravagant lifestyle. The officer has since resigned or absconded from duties after returning from Manila. This officer is yet to be arrested and prosecuted, so far nothing has been done about this. Another female officer from the same Embassy has also used more than K100, 000.00 from the Embassy to purchase a Sports Utility Vehicle (SUV). A case of outright abuse.

When FA knew about this she was given a Letter of Return, however, this officer blackmailed the Foreign Affairs Secretary with her response by giving the notice to expose his alleged abuses of public funds whilst in Manila for personal business. In her letter, she has explicitly detailed all phone records of calls/SMS and directions given by the Secretary.

If she was to come back, the letter would have made headlines in all dailies and electronic media outlets. The letter was ccd (Copies circulated) to Chief Secretary, Ombudsmen Commission, National Fraud & Anti-Corruption Directorate. However, it is doubtful that this letter ever made it past Secretary Foreign Affairs.
...

IndyWatch New Guinea News Feed Archiver

Go Back:30 Days | 7 Days | 2 Days | 1 Day

IndyWatch New Guinea News Feed Today.

Go Forward:1 Day | 2 Days | 7 Days | 30 Days

IndyWatch New Guinea News Feed was generated at Pacific News IndyWatch.

Resource generated at IndyWatch using aliasfeed and rawdog