Rethinking the paradigm for infrastructure financing

A New Solution to Building Road and other Infrastructure in Papua New Guinea by NASFUND

With the growth of Papua New Guineas economy, we have seen an almost equal a reversal in the maintenance of all our major highways and roads. From the Highlands Highway to the Madang Highway and other major roads - pot holes, washed out bridges and roads in total disrepair are sadly all to common in this ludicrously resource rich democracy.

Money dished out but where is the product?

The National Government Goods and Services funding for Provincial and Local Level Government, for the 1st Quarter of 2010, has already been allocated and partially released.

It is interesting to note that the following types of grants exist and are expanded every quarter of each financial year.

Administration Grants that are used by each Provincial Governments for administrative overheads and not salaries or allowances.

Community opposition to 'Maladina' amendments growing

Opposition to proposed changes to the law to weaken the powers of the Ombudsman Commission and protect Members of Parliament from investigation for fraud and corruption is intensifying ahead of the reconvening of Parliament on May 4th.

Latest developments in the last few days include:

Neither China or Australia provide the solution to PNGs problems

The middle class in PNG seems to be preoccupied with a debate over whether the country should continue to look South to Australia and New Zealand for assistance or whether it is better to look North to China. 

But, prompted and encouraged by Australia, China and Prime Minister Somare, they are asking the wrong question and thus they continually miss the answer to the question they should be asking which is how can PNG lift itself above its current problems and find a better way forward?

Politicians don't care about women says Dr Mola

Adapted from a story by ELIZABETH MIAE

POLITICIANS are to blame for the poor state of Papua New Guinea’s maternal health, says prominent gynecologist, Dr Glen Mola. 

“Five women die daily, but the Government ignores the problem. Women are not important as far as politicians are concerned. Women can just die when having their babies, em samting nating (it’s nothing). Is that what politicians think? That women are disposable?” he says.

Major resource projects have failed PNG say Catholic Bishops

Catholic Bishops meeting in Lae for their annual conference have highlighted the fact that major resource projects in PNG have generally failed the people and have had more negative consequences than positive ones.

“For many people the most obvious outcome of so-called development has been more negative than positive, for example, widespread corruption, poverty and violence are on the rise”.

“Wealth hasn’t trickled down throughout society and so urban settlements are growing and rural areas are becoming poorer,” say the bishops in a Pastoral Letter.

Ramu mine injunction reflects a more general failure to follow our National Goals

The National Court sitting in Madang last week refused to lift an injunction preventing the Chinese Metallurgical Construction Company (MCC) from constructing a marine tailings disposal system for its Ramu nickel mine.

The Ramu nickel mine is just one of several large mining projects under construction in Papua New Guinea and is the first major Chinese investment in the country.

Vision Accomplished?

Papua New Guinea’s (PNG) National Goals and Directive Principles provide the Job Description of all leaders of this nation. They set the foundation on which this nation must be governed. But it seems our leaders have forgotten the script.

Forty years ago, 16 Papua New Guinean members of then, House of Assembly, developed a vision for a new nation.

Ombudsman Commission opposition to proposed amendments could not be clearer

The Ombudsman Commission's opposition to the proposed changes to the Leadership Code could not be clearer, despite mischievous claims from some politician that the Commission supports the amendments.

In May 2009 the Ombudsman Commission submitted an 11 page brief to the National Executive Council (which can be downloaded below) setting out its concerns about so called "Maladina" amendments and making clear that it did not support the changes.

The Ombudsman Commission submission makes clear that the proposed changes: