Monday, October 31, 2011



A Scott Waide Film on the National Goals and Directive Principles of Papua New Guinea

“Greenpeace is delusional and RH is reckless. What’s new? I did a lot of tree hugging in the past and it didn’t get me anywhere.” Nou Vada, Law student.

When a young kid in law school posts such comments on Facebook, they need to be taken seriously. Nou Vada is the most intelligent and articulate young Papua New Guinean I’ve come across (sic). I don’t know his reasoning behind the comments but they do express a perception and perhaps confusion amongst many Papua New Guineans that Green Groups are anti-development.

This perception arises from the reality that Environmental activists have become synonymous with headline grabbing protest activities. Thus the impression that the public gets is that the greenies just want to stop all sorts of projects.

Indeed, resource exploiters regularly dog-whistle the public with ‘anti-green’ clich├ęs such that many now subscribe to that view that all green groups or Non-governmental organizations (NGOs) want to stop development..

I suppose in any case, both sides may have some merit to their arguments. Personally, I wish to visit the Constitution of Papua New Guinea to find out how it expresses Papua New Guinea’s development agenda. And perhaps a law student like Nou may articulate it better than a buai seller like me.

Papua New Guinea’s development agenda, regardless of what the Greens or the Capitalists say, is set out in its National Goals and Directive Principles as expressed in the Constitution.

In a film by Scott Waide, lawyer Ganjiki Wayne states that the writers of the Constitution weren’t so much interested in physical/structural development as in the integral development of the individual. It was a somewhat spiritual rather that material development that the founders of this nation were interested in.

This concept of development is expressed in the First National Goal and Directive Principles regarding Integral Human Development. The development model envisaged by the Founders of this nation is indeed found in Goal number Five - Papua New Guinean ways. Goal number Five specifically calls for any activity whether social, political or economic, to be consistent with the ways of Papua New Guinean societies.

Thus, if any social, political or economic activity impinges upon the Papua New Guinean way of life, it is against the Spirit of the Constitution. And since it is the Constitution that gives legal authority to the Nation State, the state of the nation should be consistent with the desires of the Constitution as expressed in the National Goals and Directive Principles.

Now the Constitution gets its legitimacy from the citizens of this nation. The Constitution is therefore an expression of the general will of the people of Papua New Guinea. The People, through their Constitution, have expressed their desire that any social, political or economic activity be consistent with Papua New Guinean Ways.

Why was it necessary to explicitly call for all development activity to be consistent with Papua New Guinean Ways? The answer is simple, for over 40 000 years indigenous Papua New Guineans were fully independent people before colonization. It was their Papua New Guinean Ways that made them totally independent.

It is this fullness of political and economic independence that the writers of the Constitution expressed in Goal number Three of the National Goals and Directive Principles – National Sovereignty and Self Reliance. The communal ownership of land and sharing of resources and responsibilities that enabled equality and participation of all members of traditional societies is expressed by Goal Two – Equality and Participation. Goal number Four on Natural Resources and Environment basically reflects the sustainable livelihood of traditional societies and their minimal impact on the environment.

I do not believe these Goals are a rejection of modernity by the writers of the Constitution. Rather, they express a desire to avoid the pitfalls of the greed of western capitalism as witnessed in the current context of global economic crisis. This fear is expressed in this prophetic statement by the Constitutional Planning Committee.

We see the darkness of neon lights.
We see the despair and loneliness in the urban cities.
We see the alienation of (the people) that is the result of the
present machine orientated economy.
We see true social security and (the people’s) happiness being
diminished in the name of economic progress.
We caution therefore that large-scale industries should be pursued only after very careful and thorough consideration of the likely consequences upon the social and spiritual fabric of our people…
There is overwhelming evidence to suggest that a significant number of people who live by the fruits of multi-million dollar multi-national corporations live in misery, loneliness and spiritual poverty.
We believe that since we are a rural people, our strength should be essentially in the land and the use of our innate artistic talents.
(Papua New Guinea Constitutional Planning Committee, 1975)

Fundamentally, the lowest common denominator between all societies in this multi-cultural nation is the relationships people have with their land. It is the land that defines a person. This is expressed in the first question two Papua New Guineans ask each other when they meet for the first time; “where are you from?”

Any social, political or economic activity that displaces people from their land and prevents them from accessing and utilizing their ancestral land is contrary to the Papua New Guinean Way referred to in Goal Number 5. It is therefore not sufficient to just resettle people and pay compensation for the land they have been displaced from.

They will never be accepted by another tribe nor will they accept the new reality. The landlord will restrict their access to gardening and hunting grounds making the settlers feeling very insecure. The settlers will also have lost their sacred sites and traditional resources that used to be acquired from their ancestral land. No amount of money can compensate for the loss of security, culture and identity that is associated with alienation from ancestral land.

What happens next happened on Bougainville on a larger scale but is already expressed in the form of various social problems and disruptions to economic activities. What it means to be Papua New Guinean is to have a connection with the land. That is what give’s one an identity and a sense of social security.

Development with-in the context of Goal number 5 must respect and safe-guard this intimate relationship between the land and it’s people. We don’t own the land, it owns us. We are guardians of the land our fore-fathers fought to protect for our sake. There is no honour in not fighting to protect one’s land.

Any activity that does not subscribe to these Five National Goals and Directive Principles is not development but bagarapment. That is why blood had to be spilt on Bougainville when people revolted against the destruction of the Mekamui – the sacred land, which is the source of everything.



imageThis month a record 11 000 hits brought the total visitor count to over 36 500. Thank you all for visiting and please spread the word about this blog.

The Namorong Report takes pride in its controversial and engaging style. As much as it has gained fans there have been more than a few feathers ruffled.

Three stories have defined the month of October.

First, was The Namorong Report’s strong opposition towards the proposed merger between Airlines PNG and Air Niugini. This blogger was in fact contacted by those involved in the merger process as it became more apparent that this blog was swaying public opinion.

The second story was about the Airlines PNG crash that killed 28 people. On the evening of Thursday the 13th, a blog was posted. With-in two hours it had received over 600 hits. Throughout the following day on Friday, The Namorong Report provided unrivalled coverage of the Air DISASTER in Madang. By Saturday the 14th of October, the Blog had received on average 1000 hits per day as people came in search for information.

The Namorong Report also had to rebut erroneous reporting by Australian news outlets, regarding the plane crash. In The Australian for example, someone turned a Lae businessman into a crash expert.

The third and perhaps most controversial story has been the POMIO logging story. Writing in PNG Attitude today, PNG media expert Keith Jackson stated;

“Meanwhile, observations on Malum’s stance have placed PNG Attitude contributor Martyn Namorong at the epicentre of a fascinating national debate.”

An article by Blair Price, published in this month’s Mining News has extensively quoted this blogger. Mr. Price states:

“[Namorong], a former medical student who makes a living selling betel nut in Port Moresby, is perhaps the most controversial of PNG’s blogging scene yet he is clearly finding an audience which is also more international than one might expect.”

The Namorong Report is free to access and I intend to keep it that way for the benefit of you the readers. It is a fearless, highly opinionated and critical blog that embodies that quote from Aung San Su Kyii;

 “Real Freedom is Freedom from fear.”

As a friend of mine stated recently; “You want change? It can only be brought about by those that have nothing to lose!”

Paraphrasing Aung San Su Kyii, I would like to conclude by stating that YOU are indeed like waters in the cupped hands of powers that be BUT I choose to be like splinters of glass in the cupped hands of the powers that be.


Maternal Mortality: The Price of listening to Banks

She fights like a woman

The Political Economy of Healthcare in Papua New Guinea

Do you BELIEVE what politicians say

Ramu Mine Hearing ends dramatically


They sold Paradise to create a Wasteland


By: Roline Likas. NBC NEWS

An insider within Tutumang Development Limited today spilled the beans on how he was used and manipulated by the company to 'sweet-talk' landowners into signing the fraudulent land deals involving the SABL on New Hanover.

Councilor of Ward 17 in the Lavongai Local Level Government where the SABL are located, Mr. Kamsal Maraleu told the Commission of Inquiry that he was a major player in what transpired amongst the directors of Tutumang.

He says the company used him because of his status in the community as he can easily influence the people.

Mr. Maraleu is the elder brother of Miskus Maraleu, company lawyer of Tutumang Development Limited, and nephew to the company's chairman Mr. Peddy Yanis.
Mr. Maraleu says, Tutumang is a Malaysian company, that has been logging under various company names in Kaut, Central New Ireland and Namatanai.

After logging these areas, the company came up with a plan to go to New Hanover because of the island's vast forest resource.

But realizing the island had a lot of educated elites, they had to hand-pick people that would agree to the project.
They also selected people from the three from the 3 SABL areas of Tabut, Hoombukul, and Central New Hanover and went ahead to select interested clans that will agree.

Mr. Maraleu admitted to the Inquiry that proper procedures were not followed.
He was responsible for lending the machineries on New Hanover and whenever there was opposition from locals, they used the police to ensure they lended the machineries.
He says they never consulted the people, but only certain clan leaders that agreed to the SABL projects.

Mr. Maraleu says he was in the engine room to coordinate the company's decisions, and the company ensured that he "sweet-talked" the people into signing the land deals without understanding the forms they sign.

Mr. Maraleu broke down in the midst of the Inquiry, bringing tears to the eyes of all the educated elites of New Hanover who were present.

He also admitted that he was a signatory to the deal, that saw the 3 SABL areas of New Hanover portions 885-C, 886-C and 887-C sold to Palmasi for 1-point-6 million US dollars.
The signing was witnessed by the company lawyers.

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Finding Bougainville’s LOST GENERATION


bandanabougboy‘Lost Generation’ is a generic term that many Bougainvilleans use to describe young people who have either lost one or both parents during the crisis. The fact that Bougainville lost a significant proportion of its population during the period of Conflict, means that the young people constitute a larger proportion.

The Lost Generation constitutes a significant proportion of the younger demography. These, mostly male adolescents usually grow up with a lack of social support. This inevitably leads to anti-social behavior such as drug and alcohol abuse.

Typically dressed in black shirts, jeans and a red bandana, this trademark of Bougainvillean male fashion has come to symbolize rebellion from authority. Some say that many young men have adapted this to emulate their heroes who fought against the PNG Government. The expression of rebellion is also through excessive drinking and drug taking.

The region of Bougainville has become self-sufficient in meeting its drug habits. Homebrew is widely available for consumption and Bougaivilleans have gained quite a reputation for their homebrew. Marijuana from Wakunai finds its way around the province.

The Lost Generation are illiterate and many become social outcasts due to anti-social behavior. Only one rehabilitation center exist in Bougainville and those members of the Lost Generation who end up there, get thrown out.

However, despite the intake of alcohol and drugs, many are timid and quite reclusive. These substances are a means of escaping reality.

Some Bougainvillean Businesses have tried to address this social issue and by providing preferential employment for the Lost Generation. However, retaining levels have been low due to underlying drug and behavioural issues that affect work ethic and attitude.

Saturday, October 29, 2011



One of Papua New Guineas prominent journalists is now embroiled in a conflict of interest saga in the blogosphere. PNGexposed BLOG recently highlighted that Mr. Nalu was flown to Pomio by notorious Malaysian loggers -Rimbunan Hijau- to file stories for The National Newspaper, which is also owned by the loggers.

PNGexposed Blog simply wanted Mr. Nalu to declare his conflict of interest regarding the stories filed from Pomio. It stated:

Surely a previously respected, talented and awarded journalist like Malum Nalu knows that if the subject of his story, in this case notorious illegal logger and human rights abuser, Rimbunan Hijau is paying him to write a story then that should be declared openly and upfront?

But in the story below penned by Malum Nalu and published today (25th October) in The National, he totally forgets to tell his readers that RH paid him to file the story.

What is even worse in this case is that Nalu was not only paid by RH to write the story he was flown into the Pomio area on an RH aircraft with the specific mission to file stories on behalf of RH which are then published in RH’s own newspaper – The National.

For the benefit of readers who aren’t aware of the Pomio story, what happened was that RH hired thugs dressed in Police uniform and flew them to Pomio specifically to bash up landowners who had fronted at a Commission of Inquiry to testify against the theft of their land for logging and oil palm.

Had it not been for social media such as Facebook, RH would have gotten away with it little misadventure. However, word got out about RH’s bullying of local landowners and the company went into damage control.

First RH denied that it had flown in the thugs dressed in Police uniform. However, the Police hierarchy later confirmed that their men were indeed flown into Pomio by RH.

Then RH changed tact and changed the story. This time The National  reported that the villagers had requested (sic) for the police to go and do alcohol awareness.

No one was buying that either so RH sent in the Big Gun – Mr. Malum Nalu, to clean up the Malaysian loggers’ shit.

The fundamental issue here is that Mr. Malum’s fellow Papua New Guineans were harassed and bashed up by thugs flown in by Malaysian Loggers (RH). Instead of focusing on this gross Human Rights abuse, Mr. Malum writes pieces for RH’s The National newspaper, attempting to discredit Green peace’s protest against RH’s activities in Pomio.

Mr. Nalu has since been roasted on the internet by many concerned Papua New Guineans who have also questioned his integrity as a Journalist. Once again RH’s Public Relations attempt has been a monumental failure that has claimed the scalp of a prominent journalist.

Mr. Nalu has been forced to come out and defend himself. Writing in response to his critics, he stated on PNGexposed BLOG:

To all those who have said such nasty things about me, just because I went to Pomio, a place that time has forgotten, I challenge you to risk your life on a small plane like me, fly to Palmalmal, walk up the mountains and talk to the people of Mamusi, who still live as their ancestors did!

Mr. Nalu’s response has been nothing short of pathetic. In the article that was featured on PNGexposed BLOG, he DOESN’T quote one single villager from Mamusi. The only person quoted in Mr. Nalu’s article is the Pomio District Administrator, Mr. Tomaleu Langisan.

Friday, October 28, 2011








Airlines PNG’s internal audit has cleared the airline company’s aircraft maintenance systems. However, information from the aircraft’s black-box point towards component failure.

So how on earth did Airlines PNG maintenance crew get the all clear when there is a suggestion that components of the aircraft may have failed? WAS THERE A MAINTENANCE OVERSIGHT? The relatives of the victims would like answers and it is imperative that investigations and information relating to the investigations not be suppressed by parties with vested interests.

There are now suggestions that the air-conditioning and cabin pressurization plant may have malfunctioned. Journalists who had travelled earlier on the fated aircraft P2 MCJ, reported that the cabin was warmer during the flight. The flight attendant reportedly told them that the air-conditioning or cooling system wasn’t working properly.

This anecdotal evidence is significant as authorities have already ruled out explosives or contaminated fuel as the causes. Once again, it highlights the erroneous speculation and poor journalism by Australian media outlets that were quick to blame fuel.

While no cause particular has been confirmed, there are strong indications that there was some sort of failure in the cooling mechanisms of the aircraft.

Meanwhile, the identity of the only passenger to survive; a Malaysian of ethnic Chinese descent, has become blurred. There are allegations that he may have been involved in illegal logging and human smuggling. Police need to thoroughly investigate the guy and find out what he was/is doing in PNG.

Bougainville’s weak Govt unable to stop Resource looting



The friendly smiles, calm turquoise tropical sea and palm-fringed white sandy beaches are a facade in this group of South Pacific islands with a tortured history. The main island of Bougainville is indeed Treasure Island.

Home to one of the world’s largest known copper/gold deposits, its Panguna Mine was indeed a curse. A violent civil war that began in 1988 was exacerbated by a blockade of the island by the Papua New Guinea Government. An estimated 15 000 people died as a result of the blockade which involved the cutting off of essential medicines to the people.

The blockade of the island existed until a cease fire in 1994. However, in rebel held territories, the looting had begun.

Tony Kevi was a young boy when the crisis began in 1988. He’s mother is a Panguna landowner. This is how he described the looting and infighting that ensued in rebel held territories;

“We couldn’t get enough of the material things the white man could give us. It was obvious, you know, when after the ceasefire when we chased off the [PNG Government] off we started fighting amongst ourselves over cars...”

Tony said that one rebel commander would pull a car out of another’s hands and there would be trouble. Today the looting continues in various forms.

Albert Kinini heads the screening committee of the Commerce Department of the Autonomous Bougainville Government. He estimates that about K300 million worth of alluvial gold is leaving the island. The Government of Bougainville does not receive any revenue from these gold exports. Much of the alluvial gold mining activity is being carried out in the Tailings regions and at Panguna.

The Commerce Department is currently screening applications for scrap metal buyers. Indeed, a lot of scrap metal is being exported from the former mining region via the port of Arawa. No one really knows the value of the exports and the once again, the Government of Bougainville does not collect revenue from this activity.

But perhaps the biggest resources coup has been the story of the speculative investment by Invincible Resources of Canada, giving them access to every single oil, Gas and mining activity on Bougainville. For a cheap price tag of K20 million, Invincible Resources owns 70% of a company created by an Act of Parliament in Bougainville. The company, known as Bogenvil Resources Development Company, was given exclusive rights to all mining and oil and gas activity under the Act.

Meanwhile a 30 000 hectare Oil Palm project is to be developed at Torokina along Bougainville’s west coast. Hakau Investments, a company linked with Lae-based businessman Sir Henry Chow, is currently undertaking surveying and feasibility studies. The area contains tracts of tropical hardwood that are expected to be clear felled and sawn into timber. The project is being opposed by the local Member of the Bougainville House of Representatives along with members of the six landowning clans.

All of these activities are taking place with-in the context of a policy and legislative vacuum. There are currently, no Mining, Forestry, Fisheries, etc... Policies and enabling legislations for Bougainville. Bougainville’s fledgling Government also lacks institutional and financial capacity.

This has resulted in many foreign businesses bypassing the government and dealing directly with local landowners and leaders. One such case involves partnerships between landowners and foreign interests in a project called Nisina Mines within the Lower Tailings Region of Panguna.

The looting that began after the departure of Papua New Guinea’s Military and Police forces continues today in its various forms. Powerful and influential men are amassing wealth and weapons to protect their interests. The Government is weak and its exercise of authority is limited.

“People are back into materialism... and we are repeating the same things. It’s all about what I can get for me today... The real threat here is that people have virtually forgotten what it was like during the blockade.” warns Tony Kevi

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Madang people forcefully evicted from land

Via PNGexposed BLOG

More than a hundred people living within the parameters of the Pacific Marine Industrial Zone area Madang are now homeless after their houses were burnt yesterday by police and members of a security company.

More than 50 houses were torched with the assistance of members of the Madang based Savolon Security company. The policemen arrived in three 10-seater landcruisers and began physically and verbally assaulting the men, women and children.

“My two girls were scared and tried to run away but the police swore at them and forced them to go into the house and pack our things, ” one women said.

Another elderly woman fell when police hurried her into the house to remove her possessions. Several people also said police and security company people initially tried to force them to burn their own houses but they refused. The eviction party also brought with them a front loader to demolish the houses. The driver had his face covered with a shirt to hide his identity.

Those who had their houses destroyed were brought in by the Filipino owned fish cannery, RD Tuna, several years ago to work on RD owned plantations. They were laid off without any repatriation plans or promise of work. Later when RD Tuna sold 200 hectares of land to the government for the controversial PMIZ project, the people were ordered to leave the area.

Former workers and their families say they’ve been unfairly treated.

“RD didn’t make it clear to us that we were not needed anymore,” said one former worker. “We were told to stand by and wait.”

RD Tuna’s record is less than impressive. In 2010, the company refused to pay its workers the minimum wage set by the government. It was only after a strike that the labor department stepped in to order the company to pay the wages.

The people are now caught between a former employer that doesn’t want them, landowners who want them gone and a new government project that has no place for them. Earlier this year, government representatives paid each family between K200 and K1000 and told them to leave the PMIZ area. Many can’t go home because the cost of airfares and ship tickets exceed the amount of money they were given.




Above: Bougainville women meeting at Manob elementary school yesterday

Women representatives from around Selau constituency in the northwestern region of the Autonomous Region of Bougainville gathered at Manob village just outside the capital Buka to discuss a proposed Mega City in the area.

The women came from the villages of Kirsana, Porpor, Isunda 1, Tabut, Tangari, Sanakoba, Torte, Ngalas, Gohi, Sorom, Ramundata and Manob were present at the meeting. In a society where land is inherited by maternal lines, the women have decided to flex their muscle against the proponents of the planned city.

As Bougainville emergences from a civil war that killed over 15 000 people, differing views about the development of the region now clash in a titanic struggle. The Mega City will occupy alienated land in the now defunct Bonis plantation that was once run by Bougainville Development Corporation, owned by the former Provincial Government. The Autonomous Government that succeeded it now plans to build a city at Bonis.

The construction of the city is vehemently opposed by the women as they have concerns about social, cultural and environmental implications. Many also fear the loss of land and the sense of security that comes with land ownership.

The women have created a petition which will be signed by villagers and presented to the Autonomous Government of Bougainville. In it they a demanding an audience with President John Momis, so that they may air grievances to him. They are also demanding social security benefits, should the city come to fruition.

The villagers of Manob, who are owners of the plantation by heritage, fear that the city would displace them. They currently produce copra from Bonis plantation and do their gardening as well. They also question why Bonis is still being held by ABG when other plantations in the Region have been taken by customary landowners following the civil war.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

LAND: That’s what makes us special


Above: Lovely view from Kokopau towards Sohano and Buka islands – Autonomous Region of Bougainville

What is the first question a Papua New Guinean would ask another when they first meet?

“Where are you from?”

This question as innocent as it may sound had major consequences during those days of tribal warfare. For it was forbidden that one should trespass in another’s land or extract resources from it. The penalty was DEATH! That was the Law of the Land.

However, even our so called kanaka forefathers who are referred to as ‘savages’ weren’t absolutely savage. It’s hypocritical that Europeans would call them savages when Europeans were trading African slaves and committing genocide against indigenous communities that they colonized. Who are the real savages then?

Many Papua New Guineans live with the inferiority complex gained from the biased brainwashing they receive at school. Even today many so called educated elite are suckers to foreigners. Politicians and Public Servants still say ‘yes Masta’ to so called Consultants also known as Technical Advisors. What's the point of having an education if you’re still going to behave like a colonized kanaka?

Just recently, our Prime Minister shamelessly went to Australia to get for neo-colonialist to come and make all the Public servants go gooogooogaaagaaa yes Masta.

So what makes us special?

Over 80% of our population are rural subsistence farmers. They own land and they live by the land. And they do not say yes Masta to any foreign crackpot. They were never colonized and they are never slaves to neo-colonizers. They are independent sovereign peoples.

Now you colonized elites call them whatever you want and say they are a problem because of what to term as ‘landowner issues’. They see it differently. They’re defending their sovereignty over the land. They’re protecting their identity as a people. An identity that is link to the sacred sites, hunting and fishing grounds, the environs and the activities that calendar trees tell them to do or prepare for.

And they’re asking you, ‘where are you from colonized mind aka intellectual elite?’

The land belongs to us. That’s what makes us special. And no amount of compensation can cater for the loss of culture and societal existence. When we protest against cultural genocide you call it ‘landowner issues’ when you’re the one tearing up our heart and soul.

Monday, October 17, 2011



John Paul Matlam (left) being consoled by Prime Minister O’Neil, after the memorial mass

Above: Divine Word Uni student, John Paul Matlam (left) being consoled by Prime Minister O’Neil, after the memorial mass. John lost five relatives in the crash.

Prime Minister Peter O’Neil flew into Madang today to visit the crash site and to meet with hospital staff and families of the victims of the air disaster.

The PM was informed by Medical staff at Modilon General Hospital that the victims of the Airlines PNG Crash, have been burnt beyond recognition. He was also informed that the process of identification would take a number of weeks.

The Australian Federal Police forensics team is leading the process of DNA identification. They will need DNA samples from the victims’ immediate family members in order to cross-match DNA logs of victims. DNA stands for deoxyribonucleic acid. It is a molecule found in the cells of living things and is sort of a biological information storage system that determines how organisms develop and function. It is one of various biological markers that can be used to identify people.

Prime Minister O’Neil also appealed for patience from the relative of the crash victims. Echoing the words of forensic specialists, he said that it could take weeks to identify the remains and hand them over to relatives. Earlier he attended a Memorial Mass at the Divine Word University chapel, with relatives of the victims. The government pledged K500 000 towards assisting relatives with the cost of repatriating the remains of the victims to be laid to rest.

The Prime Minister also thanked the staff of Modilon General Hospital for their tireless efforts. He was handed a petition by hospital staff. He said he will respond to the petition this week.

Meanwhile it was also revealed to the PM that Modilon General Hospital did not have body bags. The bags had to be sought by Civil Aviation Authorities and taken to the crash site. The PM acknowledged that government systems have been a failure to a certain extent but stopped short on apportioning blame.

In a related matter, while The Australian Newspaper has published an article claiming that the pilot was a hero, the real hero has been revealed as an obscure Community Health Worker in remote Rai Coast, who assisted survivors and contacted Health authorities with information about the crash and the number of survivors. The CHW was the first person to provide medical assistance. Indeed, the Health Worker informed authorities bluntly that there were only four survivors while the rest were dead.

Below: A Shrine dedicated to the victims of the crash.

Divine Word University erected a Shrine for the victims of the crash.

APNG PLANE CRASH: Monday Round-up


By Scott Waide

Prime Minister O'Neill is arriving this morning in Madang to visit the crash site. He will also visit the Modilon hospital and talk to staff. This afternoon, He will attend a memorial service at Divine Word University (DWU) at 1:30 PM.

Staff and students at DWU are still in shock following Thursday afternoon crash which claimed 28 lives. One former student and the parents and siblings of five students were onboard the flight which crashed near Marakum in the Raikos area of Madang.

Australian newspaper turns Lae businessman into Air Crash Expert

imageThe Australian reports that bad fuel is suspected of causing the Airlines PNG crash. That is according to their crash expert - a Lae businessman. Since when did this businessman become a crash expert? Why didn’t other planes crash if the fuel was crook?

The newspaper also called one of the pilots a hero, even though all except one passenger survived the crash.

Many Papua New Guineans questioned the integrity of The Australian newspaper in publishing such a sub-standard article.


imageMany Papua New Guineans have expressed their disgust for Airlines PNG. Facebook has been used to debate and discuss the terrible crash history of the airline. Many want to see the Airline shut down because of it’s poor safety record.


Airline PNG CRASH HISTORY By Joy Kisselpar

Airlines PNG Incidents and Accidents History Via Google

•15 December 1992. A Britten-Norman Islander aircraft struck a mountain near Alotau, Papua New Guinea. 6 people killed.
•12 July 1995. Shortly after takeoff from Dagura Airport, the Twin Otter aircraft exploded and crashed into shallow water. 13 people killed.
•11 May 1996. Britten-Norman Islander flew into a valley surrounded by high terrain near Oumba. Pilot attempted a 180 degree turn, but crashed into trees. 1 passenger killed
•9 July 1996. Twin Otter aircraft struck a mountain in cloudy conditions on approach to Mendi. 20 killed.
•29 July 2004. Twin Otter crashed near Ononge, in cloudy conditions. 2 killed.
•11 August 2009. Flight CG4684, a Twin Otter, made a failed go-around in cloudy conditions near Kokoda. The aircraft crashed into a mountain at an altitude of 5500 feet (1676 meters). All 13 people onboard were killed.
•13 October 2011. An Airlines PNG Dash 8-100, registration P2-MCJ, performing flight CG-1600 from Lae to Madang (Papua New Guinea) with 32 people on board, crashed about 20km south of Madang and went on fire, resulting in a number of deaths.

AIRLINES PNG has grounded its fleet of 12 Dash 8 aircraft following the accident


clip_image002I received an anonymous tip-off regarding illegal logging activities. I’m not sure what the message means but the sole passenger to survive the crash, a Malaysian national may have the answers.


Saturday, October 15, 2011




Along the banks of the Guabu River lie the burnt out remains of the Airlines PNG DCH8 200 series  aircraft, P2 MCJ. On Thursday the 13th of October, at around 5 PM local time the aircraft exploded mid-air and descended into the forests of the Rai Coast of Madang Province.

Villagers from the nearby village of Marakum rushed to the scene and would have risked their lives to save the passengers had it not been for the quick warning from the pilots not to do so.

Both Pilots survived the crash. Captain Bill Spencer and First Officer Campbell Wagstaff, have been airlifted to Australia, while flight attendant Kapi Eria is recovering in Port Moresby. Jeffrey Ako who was the other flight attendant on board the plane, did not survive the crash. The only other survivor was Chin Khu Fa, a Malaysian, who is currently admitted at Modilon General Hospital.

Police have now released the names of the 28 victims. Members of three families, two employees of Harmony Gold and a male flight attendant and the wife of a prominent writer and political commentator were amongst the victims of the crash.

Those killed included: Lucas Bako (male), Jenny Bal (female), Samuel Bid (male), Natasha Bonga (female), Nathan Bonga (male), Paul Konia (male), Thomas Kuekue (male), Chloe Matlam (female), Christine Matlam (female), Miria Renagi (female), Simon Tiriman (male), Sidy Abore (male), Patrus Akau (male), Ronold Bibi (male), Clotilda Bula (female), Jeffery Bula (male), Saron Doma (male), Ian Gagi (male), Benedict Kaniu (male), David Olobai (male), Samson Ote (male), Barnabas Philip (male), Debura Rabura (female), Anki Saiyong (male), Robert Sanglela (male), Mark Save (male), Cecilia Wata (female) and Airlines PNG employee Jeffrey Ako who was a crew on board the plane.

Acting Deputy Police Commisioner, Mr Yakasa flew into the crash site today, Saturday 15th October with two local forensic police experts from Port Moresby to assist Madang police in the recovery operations. Mr Yakasa said four Australian Federal Police agents will arrive on Sunday and two more will fly into the country on Monday to participate in the painstaking task of identifying the crash victims, using Police DNA technology.

Meanwhile, Provincial Police Commander, Tony Wagambie told NBC radio that the Flight Data Recorder and the Cockpit Voice Recorder have been recovered and sent to Australia for analysis. He stated also that the crash site has been secured to assist crash investigators in their investigations.

Airlines PNG has grounded its fleet of 11 Dash 8 aircraft until the 22nd of this month. They have also sought assistance from the aircraft manufacturers to assess the aircrafts. Only its twin otter aircraft are on active duty.



All 28 bodies were recovered just after 1pm on Friday 14th October 2011. by Scott WaideThursday the 13th of October will forever be imprinted in the minds of many Papua New Guineans as the day of the one of its worst aviation disasters. An Airlines PNG Dash 8 aircraft carrying 32 crew and passengers from Lae to Madang, crashed into scrubland near the village of Makarum in the Rai Coast District of Madang province, at around 5 PM . There were 28 lives lost and 4 survivors.

News about the air disaster hit the social media networks. Indeed, a lot of the posts by people on Facebook were very accurate. That evening, journalists in Madang scrambled around town checking local authorities for information but information was scarce. Also the same evening, a rescue team, including medical staff from Modilon general Hospital, was dispatched to the site.

The next day there was a lot of activity around town. Police rescue and recovery teams were assembled at the waterfront. They were later on joined by another medical team. The teams then boarded the Ramu Nico Catamaran and headed for the crash site. Another team of Police and Civil Aviation officials were airlifted to the crash site.

During the day, relatives of the victims continued to pour into the premises of Modilon General Hospital. Five Divine Word University students whose relatives were on board the fated flight were brought over to the hospital. The staff at the hospital explained to the relatives that the remains could be burnt beyond recognition. There were many somber faces and some openly wept. All relatives were housed under a large thatched structure near the offices of hospital staff.

Students at Divine Word University were in a state of shock. Many expressed sympathy towards the losses by their colleagues. They also questioned the wisdom of the School administration to have a Thanksgiving Ceremony for final year students and their parents. Some said that they were concerned about the sense of guilt with which their colleagues would live with. The University also did not fly flags at half mast as a sign of respect.

Of all four survivors of the crash, only one was admitted to the hospital. This was a male Chinese national. The other three were the two pilots and a Papua New Guinean. The pilots remained at a hotel in Madang.

Later that afternoon the remains of all 28 victims, were flown into Madang by helicopter. The body bags were laid out at the emergency department in an enclosed area. There were clouded eyes and many distraught relatives were joined by curious onlookers. Crowds surged within and outside the hospital premises. Some bodies would then be transported to Lae for DNA identification.

Meanwhile the National Government has now shelved the proposed merger between Air Niugini and Airlines PNG. Authorities have also quarantined fuel at Lae airport, from whence the flight had departed. Individuals and Businesses in Madang donated food and refreshments in support of the staff of Modilon General Hospital and the grieving relatives.

A memorial service will be held at Divine Word University Today.


I thought this song would be a fitting tribute to the victims of the crash, I hope you like it to

I wish to extend my deepest sympathies to the families of the victims of the plane crash. May the Good Lord comfort you in this time of great sadness.

Below are the names of those who lost their lives in the tragedy

Lucas Bako (male), Jenny Bal (female), Samuel Bid (male), Natasha Bonga (female), Nathan Bonga (male), Paul Konia (male), Thomas Kuekue (male), Chloe Matlam (female), Christine Matlam (female), Miria Renagi (female), Simon Tiriman (male), Sidy Abore (male), Patrus Akau (male), Ronold Bibi (male), Clotilda Bula (female), Jeffery Bula (male), Saron Doma (male), Ian Gagi (male), Benedict Kaniu (male), David Olobai (male), Samson Ote (male), Barnabas Philip (male), Debura Rabura (female), Anki Saiyong (male), Robert Sanglela (male), Mark Save (male), Cecilia Wata (female) and Airlines PNG employee Jeffrey Ako who was a crew on board the plane.

Burnt out Airlines PNG Dash 8 Aircraft. by Scott Waide

All 28 bodies of the crash victims were recovered just after 1pm. All are burnt beyond recognition. By Scott Waide

Bodies Arrive at Modilon General Hospital. by Martyn Namorong

First body being brought to layout area. by Martyn Namorong

All 28 bodies being laid out at Modilon General Hospital. by Martyn Namorong

Bodies being moved to the morgue at Modilon General Hospital, Madang. BY Martyn Namorong

Coastwatchers Memorial, Madang Town, Papua New Guinea. by Martyn Namorong


This is not how you were supposed to arrive


Friday, October 14, 2011

Second lot of Body Bags arrive

Another agonizing moment in this unfolding tragedy.

Kyrie eleison

Christo eleison

May the love of God and the fellowship od the Holy Spirit be with you all


The remains of seven victims of the Airlines PNG Crash, have been brought to Modilon General Hospital in Madang.

As the siren sounded, there was a surge of people heading to the makeshift layout area.

Many were in tears as they made there way to see the bodies being laid out.

Medical staff at the hospital will now begin the formal process of Death Certification. It is expected that the relatives will be asked to identify some of the bodies. Those bodies that have been disfigured will be sent to Lae for DNA testing and identification.

There is a somber atmosphere around the hospital. More relatives continue to pour into the hospital grounds.


Above: The Executive Officer of Modilon Hospital addresses relatives of crash victims

Mondilon General hospital has announced that all remains of victims have been brought to the coast for transportation to Madang.

There were no survivors. Medical staff who bagged the bodies have confirmed that most of the victims are recognizeable.

Some of the bodies will be transported to Lae tonight due to the lack of capacity of Modilon's Hospital morgue. Bodies of victims who are unidentifiable, will be DNA tested in Lae.

All victims will be officially pronounced dead by a medical officer at the Emergency Department of Modilon General Hospital here in Madang.


Above: Ephraim from Coca Cola speaking after handing over donations of bottled water.

The community in Madang has rallied in support of the relatives of those lost in the Airlines PNG disaster.

As of this afternoon, relatives of the victims gathered on the premises of Modilon Hospital have received donations of food and water.

Nancy Sullivan, and anthropologist based in Madang, was the first to bring food, water and mattresses for tired relatives to sleep on.

Globe has donated 50 cartons of water while Coca cola Amatil has donated 10 cartons of Natures Own water bottles.

These gestures have been very much appreciated by the staff at Modilon.

The National Disaster Office in is sending in helicopters this afternoon to ferry in bodies from the crash site.

The recovery operation is expected to go all throughout the night. Individuals and Organizations willing to donate food and drinks for staff at Modilon are encouraged to do so now.

FOUR PEOPLE SURVIVED THE CRASH: THE TWO PILOTS, THE CABIN CREW AND A CHINESE NATIONAL. The pilots and cabin crew are housed at an undisclosed location in Madang. The Chinese National is in hospital.

The fate of the other 28 people on board looks grim. Authorities say none of them survived the fire and explosion of the plane.


A medical team was dispatched yesterday evening and has yet to give updates of the situation on the ground. Civil aviation officials and a police CID team have flown to a nearby village of Makarum. The crash site is located a few kilometers away. Villagers reported seeing an explosion as the plane descended in flames.

Above: Bus transporting Divine Word University Students who lost relatives on the crash. About 5 students had relatives on board the plane (unconfirmed)

Above: Medical Response Teams travelling to crash site

Above: Police emergency response team

Above: At Modilon General Hospital.  Relatives of victims gathering under the thatched-roof building waiting for news

Above: Hospital guard monitoring the makeshift layout area where bodies of victims will be displayed for identification purposes


As time passes it is now becoming clear that this Air Crash response is a recovery operation.

A yellow tarpaulin screen marks the area where bodies will be laid out for identification.

About 7 Divine Word University students had relatives on Board. These were mostly parents of final year students. One student had both his parents and his sister with her two children, on board the fated Airlines PNG Flight.

The University has gone ahead with its Program today. Many students are traumatized and are unwilling to discuss the crash. Students also question the wisdom of the University to host the Thanks Giving program anyway.

Police have already arrived at the crash site. One Divine Student who was taken to the site. Both his parents were on board the aircraft.


A Chinese National is the only survivor brought into Modilon Hospital. The other survivors are the Pilot and CoPilot who are currently at Madang Resort.

A Police team is already at the crash site. Other Team are beeing mobilized to travel in by sea and by chopper.

I can confirm that there a 3 SURVIVORS and fate of the other 29 remains unclear.

NO BODIES HAVE BEEN BROUGHT TO MODILON HOSPITAL. The scene at the hospital is one of angst as crowds of people gather for information.

I am standing at the waterfront with a team of Police search and rescue team. There are fatalities.

Despite earlier reports that Australian Blacks Hawks would be involved, their role remains unclear. Meanwhile Ramu Nico is assisting Police logistically with the rescue and recovery operation. A medical team is travelling with Police.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

PLANE CRASH SITE: Guabe River Bank near Marakum(Updated as at 7:30am)


An Airlines PNG plane DCH8 200 series crashed on the banks of the GUABE River near Marakum Village in the Rai Coast  District south-east of Madang Town earlier this evening amidst heavy rains.  The aircraft ditched on water with 32 passengers and crew. The tail of the aircraft is said to have caught on fire.


Modilon General Hospital, MadangOfficials from the Divine Word University were seen this evening at the front of Madangs Modilon Hospital. Some parents of final year students are reported to have been on this ill-fated flight. These parents were travelling to attend the final Thanksgiving Mass with their children this weekend at the University campus.

Survivors and remains of victims are now being brought to the Hospital in Madang.

Police officer speaking to the public outside Jomba Police StationDistraught relatives of some passengers have also gathered at Jomba Provincial Police Headquarters seeking information from police. However information is very sketchy at the moment.

Emergency teams have been dispatched by road and by sea to the disaster area. Local villagers are also assisting Authorities. Australian Army Blackhawk helicopters are also be providing assistance.

Airlines PNG has a terrible safety record. It is with such notoriety that it seeks a merger with the state-owned Air Niugini. Air Niugini has never had a crash.

The Government of PNG and particularly the Minister for State Enterprise, Sir Mekere Morauta now have a public duty to stop the merger.

BELOW: Astrolabe Bay: The Coastline where the crash site is located

Astrolabe Bay, Rai Coast, Madang ProvinceCoastline of Astrolabe Bay, Rai Coast, Madang Province

Arial view of Madang Town

Above: Aerial shot of Madang taken from a similar aircraft as the one that crashed

Below: Madang Airport. Note (Right of pic) a similar type of aircraft (as the one that crashed)

Madang Airport


Coast Watchers Memorial, Madang Town



The Political Economy of Healthcare in Papua New Guinea



Papua New Guinea’s Health Minister has flown recently to Cuba to seek assistance from the Government of Cuba. There are many Papua New Guineans who pray that the Cubans will come and heal their sorrows. And indeed the clinical practice of these doctors will be of great value to the people.

But what many do not know is that Cuban doctors and Cuban Healthcare is driven by ideology. It is a social contract between the people and their government. And it is upon that relationship between State and Society that the Social Medicine is practiced.

The concept of Social Medicine stems from this maxim of a late 19th Century German Physician Rudolf Virchow. Virchow said:

Do we not always find the diseases of the populace traceable to defects in society”?

Virchow saw the obvious disparities in health between the classes of 19th Century Europe and conceptualized the relationships between societal existence and Health. His views were shared by another physician later in the 20th Century.

Ernesto Che Guevara was an Argentine physician who later on became a leader of the Cuban Revolution. As a young Medical Student, Che travelled between 1950 and 1951 throughout South America and became radicalized by the social injustice that was prevalent throughout the continent. Also known as El Che, this physician, author, intellectual, diplomat and military theorist believed that politics was a form of Medical Practice. Echoing Virchow, Che said:

“[T]he revolution’s task—the task of training and nourishing the children, the task of educating the army, the task the lands of the old absentee landlords among those who sweated every day on that same land without reaping greatest work of social medicine that has been done in Cuba.”

The are exciting opportunities that presents themselves, with the prospect of the arrival of Cuban doctors on Papua New Guinea soil. Indeed, the nation has been looking the wrong direction all throughout its short history when many solutions to our problems lie in the South American continent.

In terms of Healthcare, there has to be a shift towards Social Medicine. Communities need a greater say and participation in the delivery of Health Services.

The Model of Medical Education; although Clinically-Sound, is based upon training of doctors for a Western Health-care system that does not exist in this nation. Doctors are not trained to function with-in this health system so they get frustrated over the lack of support they receive to practice Medicine.

Indeed, Medical training is heavily focused on Medical Sciences and Clinical medicine, which is fine, but that is based on the assumption that the other determinants of Health will be catered for by someone. For example, a medical student in Australia does not have to worry so much about the politics and administration of Healthcare because the systems in place take care of that and support the work of that student when he/she becomes a clinician. In Papua New Guinea, politics is very relevant to a medical student along with anthropology and sociology because these factors play a significant role in either facilitating or impeding the work of a doctor.

The work of many doctors is interfered with by factors such as politics, crime, administrative incompetence, society’s attitudes towards illness, and the lack of other enabling mechanisms such as equipment and infrastructure. In Medical School, students are not taught to manage these complex issues or very little time is allocated. The result is that failures elsewhere are unfairly judged by the community as ‘clinical incompetence’ of a doctor.

Medical Education in Papua New Guinea is supported by Australian International Development Assistance (AusAID). The models for the Problem-Based-Learning (PBL) form of medical education are thus imported from Australia. What this means is that the country produces good doctors who can work in Australia but will have difficulty handling the needs of Social Medicine in PNG.

The influence of organizations such as AusAID and World Bank has thus been very detrimental to Healthcare in Papua New Guinea. A recent report by the Ministerial Task force on Maternal Mortality found that user fees charged by hospitals were a deterrent to pregnant women seeking medical assistance. This user pay system was introduced as part of the World Bank initiated, Structural Adjustment Program.

The Cuban Health system does not depend on AusAID or the World Bank and is indeed better than the American Health system. In bringing in the Cuban doctors, we should also be asking ourselves why the Cuban Health System is on par or even better than most developed countries. And in doing so, reform the Health system accordingly.

What aspects of Social Medicine are applicable to Papua New Guinea? What is the most appropriate model of medical education and by the same token, what is the right model of development for Papua New Guinea? The answers to these questions lie in the Americas.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011



imageIn the End, the debate over whether Air Niugini (ANG) and Airlines PNG (APNG) boils down to who benefits the most. Customers want cheaper fares and Private Shareholders want well performing shares.

Customers and the people of Papua New Guinea who own Air Niugini, do not want to see fares go up. While the government is happy to Guarantee that there will be no job losses; it CANNOT GUARANTEE that there wont be increases in airfares. All it says is that it will put in place Community Service obligations “aimed at ensuring the increased coverage of services is met, and that people can afford to fly”

The other thing that the Government has put out in its media statement is that Air Niugini currently needs K800 million Kina to refleet. They claim that it currently does not have the capacity to raise that kind of money. But the interesting paradox here is that while the State is not willing to finance the refleeting of ANG; the State will, by virtue of its share-holding in a new airline, finance or guarantee any such exercise as refleeting.

Ultimately though, any costs associated with expansion of services will be passed on to the travelling public. Thus, the statement “that people can afford to fly” can be rephrased as “that RICH people can afford to fly.”





THIS IS RH’s Press Release from the 10th of October

Rimbunan Hijau Group of Companies
PO Box 102
National Capital District
For Immediate Release 10, Ocotber 2011
The Rimbunan Hijau Group welcomes any police investigations into this allegation made by PNG Eco-Forestry a non government organization which does not support any form of development in Papua New Guinea to uplift the ordinary life of Papua New Guineans even though all process of acquisition and requirement are met by the companies.
Rimbunan Hijau vehemently denies any imputations that it condones any such baseless allegations.
The majority of the land owners support the Palm Oil projects and the recent attempts by this few disgruntled land owners attempt with assistance from NGOs whom do not support any form of development, to derail and stop this very important project was refused by the National Court recently.
The Royal Constabulary is very independent and high integrity institution of the state of Papua New Guinea and we welcome the comments of Acting Police Commissioner Tom Kulunga.
We regret this constant unverified adverse media release by non – government organization in hell bent generating adverse publicity in order to keep their antigovernment campaign alive for domestic and international donors is very much regretted and it is not helpful for a country that is seeking to develop its resources sustainably which is much needed.


Logging giant 'paid for crackdown on villagers'


POLICE IN Papua New Guinea have revealed a logging company financed a crackdown on villagers protesting against a controversial oil palm plantation.

Villagers in East New Britain province have been protesting against an oil palm plantation covering 44,000 hectares, saying the land was leased without their consent.

Last week a squad of policemen was sent to the area and protestors say they arrested two men and bashed several others.

Assistant Commissioner Anton Billy accused the protestors of trespassing into the plantation's work camp and assaulting workers.

He said Malaysian logging giant Rimbunan Hijau flew the officers to the area and was paying their allowances and providing accommodation.

"We don't have any funds to get these people there and pay them allowances and all this stuff. That's normal," he said.

Rimbunan Hijau is yet to comment.

Source: Australian Broadcasting Corporation, 11 October