A letter to Julia Gillard

By Trevor Freestone

Dear Julia,

I have attempted to draw attention to the serious situation in Papua New Guinea to Kevin Rudd as Foreign Affairs Minister and Tony Abbott as Leader of the Opposition. Their staff thank me for my communication and things end there.

The situation is so serious that Australia needs to become aware of what is happening and develop a plan that will be of benefit both to Papua New Guinea and Australia.

The main concerns are Corruption, Mining and Logging abuses, (including deep sea waste disposal of mine waste into the ocean close to Australian territorial waters), Lack of effective aid by Ausaid (one report states that 50% of this aid is used in administration, some just disappears and a small amount reaches its objective. However I cannot confirm this), Lack of sufficient policing to stop crime, and Poor health services to distant rural communities. Etc Etc the list goes on and on.

Your staff can bring you up to date by referring to the following web sites: Keith Jackson's PNG Attitude (a web site where both Australian and Papua New Guineans comment on what is wrong and suggest action that is needed),  ActnowPNG.org (a web site developed by educated Papua New Guineans to fight for a better PNG), Mine Watch on face book (a site exposing bad mining practices).

By searching the Web you can find many examples of bad practices in PNG for example Google Amoi village png and you will see photos and details of how a logging company has ignored the conditions of its contract and has destroyed the villager's water supplies and Sago resources, in spite of the villagers owning the land. One has to ask how is it they were able to get away with this?

The question I would like to ask you is why do both sides of Parliament choose to ignore most of what is happening in PNG? How can a simple person such as myself get you to understand that the people in rural areas just want the nonsence to stop? They can see the potential their country has if only the corruption and mismanagement would stop. Why doesn't your party put pressure on the PNG Government to take the situation seriously?

Trevor Freestone



why is it that PNG people expect other countries especially Australia to fix their country? The people of PNG are the only ones who can fix it. There are laws and international bounds in which they must abide by. If they did what you said the PNG government would get rid of Australia's influence and their money. Its been done before. Read any story in the Middle East, Africa and Asia where other countries got involved.
The situation was made worse.

PNG people have a responsibility to stop talking and do some thing. Why are you talking when no one is listening.


The ONLY thing that will work for the country to change is a peaceful protest. If the laws says no then do it anyway the law makers are violating the constitution to say you cant protest. Although I warn you it may cost lives but that's the cost of freedom. The churches may say well you must obey the law of the land. That's not true. You must obey Gods law first then the law of the land.

The Church obeying a corrupt law is in fact at fault themselves of false dealing, corruption and fraud. The church should know better.

In every country in every people group in history to get freedom the people must ban together and rise!!! stop work, stop spending and protest peacefully. The law may attack with violence this is there choice.
Record the situation on phones and any recording device upload them send them to international media.

This my friends will get you your GOD GIVEN FREEDOM!!! its your right under God, your constitution of democracy and international law!!!

Hi Serena,
Thankyou for your comments. You are correct in that PNG people can solve PNG problems. However you will note that this letter is from an Australian Citizen to his Prime Minister, because his country spends millions in his and other people's tax monies on this country in untied AID. So as a responsible citizen who has concerns for PNG too, wants his country to assist in putting pressure. The whole idea of ACT NOW is to encourage citizens and friends of this country to do their bit, in whatever capacity to assist in in putting pressure necessary for action. If we just sit back and be cynical, the bad guys have a field day. Pressure increases by by time, and eventually will explode. There are several obstacles to protests in this country - it's not just the ban on protests that is the hinderance. PNG is a country where wantok system and regionalism thrives. In this kind of environment, people remain divided on the issue, because their allegiance is to a certain group who are in power and it means they can "benefit" while this is the case. But there is a common enemy, and people - not the middle working class, because they are in their comfort zones and hesitant to rock the boat. It's the settlers, the lower wage earners, the people who struggle daily to put food on the table must come to a place where they understand this common enemy, that deprives them of their rights, they must be assured that IT'S OK to stand up and demand change. the leaders in creating change are not in the elite, the people that will make things happen are small people. All it will take is articulation in the simplest terms so people are able to join/connect the dots and create a big picture of WHY they live the way they do. Until then, keep putting pressure consistently !!! Don't stop until that they can understand. Cheers

This letter was actually sent to Julie Bishop the shadow minister for foreign affairs. Previous letters to The Government and the opposition had produced no tangible result. My aim was to get someone asking why nothing was being done to draw up a plan to help PNG.

People have to understand that so many Australians spent the best part of their lives helping to develop Papua New Guinea so that the country could eventually gain their independence. In fact many Patrol Officers gave their lives in carrying out their duties. This is why Many Australians still have such an interest in PNG.

We are annoyed when we see the level of crime, corruption and mining pollution that is occurring under the government of Somare. We are annoyed when we see the Somare Family buying Three expensive houses in Cairns when the people in Villages are dying from disease because they haven't fresh clean water to drink. We are annoyed when we find even an Australian mining company is causing major environmental damage. We are very annoyed when the Somare Government is caught using force to remove people from their traditional lands so that the Chinese can build housing for the Chinese criminals being brought into the country to work as free labour on their mine. We are horrified to learn that plans are underway to establish deep sea disposal of mine waste. A plan that will also pollute Australian waters.

We are very annoyed that ordinary citizens like myself are ignored by our Australian government. The situation is serious and people like Effy and Sam deserve Australia's support as they fight for a better PNG. We do not want the people to have to fight for the right to enjoy responsible Government. The government will resort to deadly force and many good people will die.

Kevin Rudd went to PNG in 2008 and received an enormous welcome. This visit tended to give credibility to Somare.
The people who I spoke to during a visit after Kebvin Rudd's was that they welcomed him because they believed that at long last Australia was going to get involved in PNG and together with the people of PNG develop a plan to get PNG back on track.This has not happened.

It is true that the future lies in the hands of the people of Papua New Guinea. This doesn't mean that they can't ask for help from Australia or other countries. Pressure has to be put on the Somare Government to either stop the rot or resign.