Basil slams MPs pay rise

By Gabriel Lahoc

Bulolo MP Sam Basil is against the budgeted pay rise for Members of Parliament, announcing to his district that he “didn’t get into parliament to get a pay rise, but to bring development and services down to the people.”

Mr Basil said this on Monday during the launch of the EMTV and Australian Network signals into Lekluk village in Mumeng Local Level Government area.

He described as “ridiculous” the decision of the Somare government, seeing it as another luxury item on the Government’s wish list.

Papua New Guinea facing cholera epidemic

By Daniel Purt*

A cholera outbreak that began in July 2009 in Papua New Guinea has infected at least 5,000 people and has claimed the lives of at least 79, causing overcrowded hospitals and a quickly diminishing stockpile of treatments.

The island of Daru is one of the hardest hit by the epidemic, with at least 800 people diagnosed and around 300 people requiring emergency treatment at Daru General Hospital, which is severely underequipped with only 60 beds available, reports.

Manipulation of Parliament an attack on democracy that undermines investor confidence

Papua New Guinea's Parliament has now twice refused to entertain a vote of no-confidence against the Prime Minister, Michael Somare, and this underrmining investor confidence according to the  world's leading economic and financial analysis firm.

IHS Global Insights, says Parliament's rejection of the no-confidence motion in the Prime Minister raises "real questions about the long-term stability of the country's political system" and "adds weight to claims that the government is manipulating the system to maintain its hold on power"

Life in Kaugere settlement, poverty and why foreign aid is failing Papua New Guinea

By Lydia & Peter Kailap*

Kaugere is one of the oldest settlements in PNG, having started in the 1960s, and is home to the notorious raskol gang, Koboni. Even other raskol gangs will not tangle with these boys.

These are the boys we live and work with; they are the boys who built our school, teach our children and take care of CUMA – the Chilren’s University of Music and Art, which we established. They have renamed themselves the “Fox Tribe Youth Development Program”.

Highlands Pacific in controversial claims about the Ramu mine

Mining company Chairman, Ken MacDonald, has gone on the record with some very controversial and potentially misleading claims about the Ramu nickel mine in Papua New Guinea and its plans to dump millions of tons of waste into the sea.

In a radio interview broadcast last Friday in Australia, MacDonald said the waste from the mine will not be toxic. 

This is refuted by mining experts and marine scientists.

EU trade policies are a 'new resource grab'

European countries, which became rich by seizing natural resources from their Colonial empires, are now engaged in a new resources grab using free-trade policies that undermine developing countries and lock them into a cycle of poverty.

This is the conclusion drawn in a compehensive new report on European Union trade policies written by Mark Curtis for a number of European charities and, ironically, funded by the EU.

Government wrong to protect foreign companies while ignoring worker abuses


While the PNG government says in its budget unveiled this week that it wants to 'lower barriers to foreign investment' and remove 'business impediments, lower import tariffs and reducing regulatory burdens' it seems to have forgotten the interests of its own citizens in its rush to support foreign companies.

A new report by the International Trade Union Confederation says there are "serious and continued violations of fundamental workers' rights" in Papua New Guinea.