Monday, April 30, 2012

Conditions during the American Declaration of Independence Resonate with PNG TODAY

Below are the FULL TEXT and Video of the words of the US Declaration of Independence
Hollywood actors and actresses recite the American Declaration of Independence

When in the Course of human events it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature's God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation.

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. — That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, — That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness. Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security. — Such has been the patient sufferance of these Colonies; and such is now the necessity which constrains them to alter their former Systems of Government. The history of the present King of Great Britain is a history of repeated injuries and usurpations, all having in direct object the establishment of an absolute Tyranny over these States. To prove this, let Facts be submitted to a candid world.

He has refused his Assent to Laws, the most wholesome and necessary for the public good.

He has forbidden his Governors to pass Laws of immediate and pressing importance, unless suspended in their operation till his Assent should be obtained; and when so suspended, he has utterly neglected to attend to them.

He has refused to pass other Laws for the accommodation of large districts of people, unless those people would relinquish the right of Representation in the Legislature, a right inestimable to them and formidable to tyrants only.

He has called together legislative bodies at places unusual, uncomfortable, and distant from the depository of their Public Records, for the sole purpose of fatiguing them into compliance with his measures.

He has dissolved Representative Houses repeatedly, for opposing with manly firmness his invasions on the rights of the people.

He has refused for a long time, after such dissolutions, to cause others to be elected, whereby the Legislative Powers, incapable of Annihilation, have returned to the People at large for their exercise; the State remaining in the mean time exposed to all the dangers of invasion from without, and convulsions within.

He has endeavoured to prevent the population of these States; for that purpose obstructing the Laws for Naturalization of Foreigners; refusing to pass others to encourage their migrations hither, and raising the conditions of new Appropriations of Lands.

He has obstructed the Administration of Justice by refusing his Assent to Laws for establishing Judiciary Powers.

He has made Judges dependent on his Will alone for the tenure of their offices, and the amount and payment of their salaries.

He has erected a multitude of New Offices, and sent hither swarms of Officers to harass our people and eat out their substance.

He has kept among us, in times of peace, Standing Armies without the Consent of our legislatures.

He has affected to render the Military independent of and superior to the Civil Power.

He has combined with others to subject us to a jurisdiction foreign to our constitution, and unacknowledged by our laws; giving his Assent to their Acts of pretended Legislation:

For quartering large bodies of armed troops among us:

For protecting them, by a mock Trial from punishment for any Murders which they should commit on the Inhabitants of these States:

For cutting off our Trade with all parts of the world:

For imposing Taxes on us without our Consent:

For depriving us in many cases, of the benefit of Trial by Jury:

For transporting us beyond Seas to be tried for pretended offences:

For abolishing the free System of English Laws in a neighbouring Province, establishing therein an Arbitrary government, and enlarging its Boundaries so as to render it at once an example and fit instrument for introducing the same absolute rule into these Colonies

For taking away our Charters, abolishing our most valuable Laws and altering fundamentally the Forms of our Governments:

For suspending our own Legislatures, and declaring themselves invested with power to legislate for us in all cases whatsoever.

He has abdicated Government here, by declaring us out of his Protection and waging War against us.

He has plundered our seas, ravaged our coasts, burnt our towns, and destroyed the lives of our people.

He is at this time transporting large Armies of foreign Mercenaries to complete the works of death, desolation, and tyranny, already begun with circumstances of Cruelty & Perfidy scarcely paralleled in the most barbarous ages, and totally unworthy the Head of a civilized nation.

He has constrained our fellow Citizens taken Captive on the high Seas to bear Arms against their Country, to become the executioners of their friends and Brethren, or to fall themselves by their Hands.

He has excited domestic insurrections amongst us, and has endeavoured to bring on the inhabitants of our frontiers, the merciless Indian Savages whose known rule of warfare, is an undistinguished destruction of all ages, sexes and conditions.

In every stage of these Oppressions We have Petitioned for Redress in the most humble terms: Our repeated Petitions have been answered only by repeated injury. A Prince, whose character is thus marked by every act which may define a Tyrant, is unfit to be the ruler of a free people.

Nor have We been wanting in attentions to our British brethren. We have warned them from time to time of attempts by their legislature to extend an unwarrantable jurisdiction over us. We have reminded them of the circumstances of our emigration and settlement here. We have appealed to their native justice and magnanimity, and we have conjured them by the ties of our common kindred to disavow these usurpations, which would inevitably interrupt our connections and correspondence. They too have been deaf to the voice of justice and of consanguinity. We must, therefore, acquiesce in the necessity, which denounces our Separation, and hold them, as we hold the rest of mankind, Enemies in War, in Peace Friends.

We, therefore, the Representatives of the United States of America, in General Congress, Assembled, appealing to the Supreme Judge of the world for the rectitude of our intentions, do, in the Name, and by Authority of the good People of these Colonies, solemnly publish and declare, That these united Colonies are, and of Right ought to be Free and Independent States, that they are Absolved from all Allegiance to the British Crown, and that all political connection between them and the State of Great Britain, is and ought to be totally dissolved; and that as Free and Independent States, they have full Power to levy War, conclude Peace, contract Alliances, establish Commerce, and to do all other Acts and Things which Independent States may of right do. — And for the support of this Declaration, with a firm reliance on the protection of Divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes, and our sacred Honor.

New Hampshire:
Josiah Bartlett, William Whipple, Matthew Thornton

Massachusetts:
John Hancock, Samuel Adams, John Adams, Robert Treat Paine, Elbridge Gerry

Rhode Island:
Stephen Hopkins, William Ellery

Connecticut:
Roger Sherman, Samuel Huntington, William Williams, Oliver Wolcott

New York:
William Floyd, Philip Livingston, Francis Lewis, Lewis Morris

New Jersey:
Richard Stockton, John Witherspoon, Francis Hopkinson, John Hart, Abraham Clark

Pennsylvania:
Robert Morris, Benjamin Rush, Benjamin Franklin, John Morton, George Clymer, James Smith, George Taylor, James Wilson, George Ross

Delaware:
Caesar Rodney, George Read, Thomas McKean

Maryland:
Samuel Chase, William Paca, Thomas Stone, Charles Carroll of Carrollton

Virginia:
George Wythe, Richard Henry Lee, Thomas Jefferson, Benjamin Harrison, Thomas Nelson, Jr., Francis Lightfoot Lee, Carter Braxton

North Carolina:
William Hooper, Joseph Hewes, John Penn

South Carolina:
Edward Rutledge, Thomas Heyward, Jr., Thomas Lynch, Jr., Arthur Middleton

Georgia:
Button Gwinnett, Lyman Hall, George Walton

Saturday, April 28, 2012

NCDC stinks so they frame Buai Sellers to distract

BY GARY JUFFA

563487_10150634763541286_78768851285_9626964_1937896491_nAfter leaving the public service, I have found many ways to occupy my time. I read books. I paint. I slept and I even spent more time in my home province, visiting relatives, friends and working on my land (between reading books). I have found time to help out friends and family when they have needed it and when and where I can. Or they just ask me for money. Which I dont have so I just tell them stories about NCDC which bore them to such a state that they leave me alone.

I have also started writing letters, to anyone and everyone. I like writing letters. It gives me something to do to stave off the boredom of unemployment. Recently, I started to write letters that I have termed “literary rants”. In much angst and indignation, at anything and everything I believe is wrong in our country (this list is near endless). The increasing rubbish and filth, the lies and stealing, the growing crime rate, the lack of services and the lack of care from those who could and should but don’t.

These letters are written to everyone in authority and copied to all who should take note and act (but usually don’t). Of course in a Utopian world (similar to the worlds that many of the patrons of the yacht club apparently come from if you were to spend some time on any given Friday listening to their tales of how wonderful their homes where) this would be the case: someone, somewhere, paid money by ratepayers to act, would do so! I doubt if anyone takes much notice of these letters, but I feel satisfied that somehow, I am expressing myself and somehow, I represent many of my fellow countrymen and perhaps a few genuine visitors and investors even. Surprise, surprise, I do care about investors! Yes, I may rant and rave about foreign exploitation every so often but the fact is I am keen on genuine investors, those who pay their taxes, respect our culture and people and make an effort to keep their profits in the country and contribute to its economic growth.

Apparently the economic growth in this country is tremendous! You wouldn’t tell though when you drive around over roads that look and feel as if they were mistakenly bombed by the US Navy en route to Iraq. Nor would you think this if you were to visit any given school where classrooms of children fluctuate between 120 and 300 to a teacher, usually sitting on a ground floor and trying to stay awake because they took only 5 PMV buses to get to school.

Anyway, recently, I wrote a letter to the NCDC Governor, Honourable Powes Parkop who I consider a friend of some sort, although I haven’t heard from him for some time. Perhaps he is busy preparing for the - on again, off and on – elections or happy gardening somewhere. Now of course, if I wanted to write about what I really thought and all the issues that the NCDC could resolve (- but doesn’t! - ) I would never have gotten around to writing this letter, besides there isn’t enough paper in PNG or the South Pacific for that size of project!

Anyway, my letter was about something that really irks me, something that enrages me so much I feel the need to raze buildings to the ground or commit some inane sense of violence towards the persons who allow it to be: NCDC. I am certain that all readers are reading and nodding in agreement quite vigorously as any service the NCDC delivers is never to the satisfaction of anyone unless they had half a brain and were comatose, in which case they wouldn’t care.

The issue I speak of is the garbage disposal system in NCDC or rather the lack of it. Apparently, there are these persons called “contractors” who work for NCDC who are supposed to dispose of garbage. This is ironic given that the entire city we live in is just one giant heap of garbage anyway and any such effort is merely shifting garbage and technically not really disposing of it. These contractors as they like to refer to themselves as are almost as annoying as taxi drivers and PMV drivers in the way they do anything which is with absolutely no care for anyone.

These contractor characters traverse the city to and fro, carting rubbish and distributing it from one point to another, most of it along the way, in their battered trucks which either have makeshift cages or just a few kids sitting on top of a pile of rubbish as they reel and totter along like a giant wounded robotic tortoises, rubbish of all kind flying here and there, sticking on windscreens, on your ice cream cone, on your toddler screaming face, on your latest acting Papua hairstyle or just causing traffic accidents, sprinkling filth all over the already filthy Port Moresby, the “Pearl of the pacific”.

It seems that these contractors were engaged just prior to independence for the purpose of transporting asbestos, left over Japanese wrecks and remains of old kiaps to the colonial dump sites but have survived and since evolved into general household garbage disposal units. Their drivers give strong credibility to Charles Darwin’s theories about the missing link. Often they will smile at you with their remaining three teeth and wave a grimy hand as you drive around them, glaring and shaking your fist, as if you had to be forgiven because you didn’t understand the intricate technical details of garbage disposal – which these creatures are of course experts in.

Anyway, I am digressing and yes, ranting. But that’s what I do in my letters. I ask questions as to whether or not the Governor and his various minions that supposedly work at City Hall,ever drive by these characters in their dilapidated ancient vehicles and witness the garbage being re distributed all over Port Moresby? I mean say for instance while on their way to work, lets’ say, 11am, the usual time of day they would normally start, do they see such a truck and say to their wantoks sitting offside occasionally spewing litres of buai juice out of the government car “Look at that disgusting filth!!” Do they for instance get the plate number and find out why such a truck that looked like it was built in 1939 is even on the road??Do they wonder how such a truck was given a contract and why? What criterion is used? Is there a set of criteria? Who is responsible for signing these contracts?

The NCDC collects ridiculous amounts of money from GST (about K9 million per month) and the various fees and fines it imposes whenever it feels like raising money for the Christmas party or some other such event. Yet, it has no proper procurement process in place to ensure that services and goods are procured in a manner that is transparent (this is a word never ever heard of in government) and in accordance to the Finance Management Act (“What’s that?” many public servants often ask confused whenever this piece of law is mentioned). It is amazing that in this day and age, with the necessary and available technology, we do not have an efficient procurement process or system in place nor do we have an evaluation mechanism to monitor and review the work of contractors to ensure that they are meeting acceptable standards of service delivery.

You would imagine that there would also be standards for workers employed by City Hall to ensure their safety and health. You would imagine that the hordes of Australian public servants who saturate every government and statutory authority in PNG in the Strongarm Government Program (the successor to the ECP or Enforced Colonial Package program) would have by now detected the lack of necessary controls and recommended them. Of course this never happens because they are usually too busy at the yacht club talking about the great sacrifice they had to make to come and save these savages. Also collecting their receipts and filling up the various tax forms to claim back the GST they paid whenever they bought an SP or anything else is very tiresome work and no one in their right mind can do much more after such a strenuous task, especially in this heat.

Another issue that bugs me is dead dogs. You can witness the entire process of decaying life right before your very eyes (No, no, marriage is NOT the same guys! Well, almost) as you witness entire varieties of shapes and sizes of weevils and maggots go to work on what was once Whiskey or Snoopy or whatever. Most of these dogs are male and take note guys, usually get killed while demonstrating their toughness and stupidity following a female dog wherever she is going, oblivious to the environment, the surroundings and dangers posed by his act of utter stupidity and carelessness (sound familiar?). They are seen everywhere! Decaying and stewing in the sun, oozing all manner of animal fluids, hosting raging parties thrown by all manner of bacteria (some grow quite large and get elected into parliament!) and slowly growing until they either float away or explode into tiny pieces of rotten flesh that eventually meet up with other rotting pieces of rotting flesh from pet corpses all over NCDC and form zombie like NCDC workers who are genetically structured to issue contracts for garbage disposal in NCD!


* NCD is National Capital District
# NCDC is the City Council

Friday, April 27, 2012

Prime Minister Says there is no extension of Parliament

A Jaive Smare video

After weeks of mounting pressure on the O’Namah regime following its desperate attempt to grab hold of power, the simmering tensions between Parliament and the People is cooling down.

Following yesterday’s meeting between Prime Minister Peter O’Neil and Leaders of Unions, Churches and Business, Prime Minister O’Neil has laid all matters to rest.

Regarding the elections, Mr O’Neil said that the dates of the Election are set by the Electoral Commissioner. “As I’ve stated on many many occasions, and I state again; that elections dates are set by the Electoral Commissioner, and that the Electoral Commissioner has now set the date at 18th of May to issue the writs,” Mr O’Neil said. Mr O’Neil said the return of writs remains the same at 27th of July.

TERM OF THIS PARLIAMENT EXPIRES TODAY

image

Today 27th of April this, Parliament must rise to go for the elections as per the original dates for elections. Regardless of whether the election dates were moved Parliament must for once show some respect to the People of Papua New Guinea. Lawyers advising this Rogue Parliament must also refrain from complicating matters further. Common sense must prevail!

When we voted these MPs into Power we consented to them being in Power until today. That was the 2007 Social Contract between the People and Parliament and it is sacred and should not be violated. If this Parliament breaches that Social Contract then the People, from whom all Power Ultimately rests with have the Power to use whatever means necessary to enforce their Rights.

TODAY ALL POWERS OF PARLIAMENT REST WITH THE 7 MILLION PEOPLE OF PAPUA NEW GUINEA. TODAY WE HAVE A CARE-TAKER GOVERNMENT. THE PEOPLE’S POWER NOW RESTS IN THEIR HANDS IN ANTICIPATION OF POLLING WHEN THEY CAST THEIR VOTES AND RETURN THEIR POWER TO PARLIAMENT VIA THEIR ELECTED REPRESENTATIVES.

The Social Contract between the People of Papua New Guinea and the Parliament Expires TODAY.

The O’Namah regime is TODAY merely a care-taker Government. Each Member of Parliament is merely a care-taker MP. The People of Papua New Guinea are Sovereign Today and have Ultimate Say on National Affairs until such time that they chose new Leaders.

I as a voting Papua New Guinean claim my Franchise and NO amount of Political Spin or Legal Mumbo Jumbo will disenfranchise me of the Powers restored in me. If this Rogue Parliament thinks it can modify the original Social Contract of 2007, it has to go to every single Voter and get their informed consent.

There are NO LOOPHOLES or FINE PRINT as far as I’m concerned. Having had OUR VOTE RESTORED back to the 7 million Papua New Guineans TODAY, WE RESERVE THE RIGHT TO DICTATE TO THE CARE-TAKER GOVERNMENT OUR WISHES AND ASPIRATIONS!

Today onwards, this Government shall be referred to as a care-taker Government. ALL MPs TERMS EXPIRE ON THE 29TH OF JULY 2011.

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Just Leave Bougainville Alone will ya

BY CLAIRE

imageThursday. The second last day of the working week and the political situation in this awe inspiring nation of ours is ever turbulent, yes we are truly a vibrant democracy.

Today the topic was intended to be on a word, which has been repeatedly defined and said on Karai National Radio (PNG’s national broadcaster) since yesterday. The 411 is that our Prime Minister and his Sandaun Sniper are accusing John Paska (the Secretary General of the PNG Trade Union Congress) of inciting anarchy by discrediting their government. I think Mr O’Neill and Mr Namah surely need to wake up and smell the truth, one big nostril at a time! Papua New Guineans don’t care for you politics Mr O’Neill, Mr Namah, Mr Nape, Mr Arthur Somare and even Mr Paska – we are so over your petty squabbling and carrying on. Pointing fingers, saying this person did wrong, don’t blame me because I’m the good guy – we can see through you all! Maybe you all had honorable intentions to begin with, but once you start becoming deaf to what we, your people are saying and continue on with your own agenda you officially become the bad guy! Full stop!

So that was what was going through my head to begin with, then I saw a comment by Axel Sturm (President of the European Shareholders of Bougainville Copper) to an article titled The Greatest Threat BCL’s Future is its Hidden Past by a Dr Kris Lasslett. I read the comment by Sturm to my (Bougainvillean) household and you can imagine the uproar, especially since these comments alluded to Bougainvilleans being greedy, murdering criminals and downplayed the role and responsibility that BCL/Rio Tinto had with regards to  the  Bougainville crisis. I personally would like to know who Sturm is calling ‘rebel groups on the ground’.

Neither Sturm nor Lasslett were there during the crisis. Neither Sturm nor Lasslett lost their brothers, fathers, uncles, nephews, grandfathers or sons because of the crisis (they’d probably just count the female relatives lost as collateral anyway!). Neither Sturm nor Lasslett knows how beautiful and mighty the Jaba was before the mine. Neither Sturm nor Lasslett see the mighty Jaba as a dribbling, unnatural blue, shadow of itself, 23 years after the mine ceased operations. Neither of you, Sturm or Lasslett, knows what it is like to be educated enough to see MY people through your eyes but feel them with MY Bougainvillean heart!

In the last three decades there have too many technical experts with their analysis, their debates and their surveys of: the environment, the people and sociology of Bougainvilleans. The thing is you can come with your strategy - how to gather information, your theories, your knowledge on how the world works and study MY people for ten years – then you leave and claim to be an expert on all things Bougainvillean when the Bougainville you knew two years ago has already shifted and become a different society.

The facts are BCL/Rio Tinto, its executives and associates with its funders have never apologized for the mine and the damage it caused to the environment and to the people of Bougainville or the families of those soldiers who lost their lives fighting for the government of Papua New Guinea.

The fact is they (Rio Tinto and co) think that because they brought their big machines, their scientific proficiency and their big money to dig up mineral resources on Bougainville, they have rights over these mineral resources.

The fact is that had BCL/Rio Tinto (all your executives, associates, funders etc) and the PNG government given enough time for us (Bougainvilleans and Papua New Guineans) to be educated to the level that we are now (and left our mineral resources the hell alone) we would be able to mine Panguna ourselves.

Compensation for the irreparable damage done to our river system, to our masalai areas, to the lost hunting and gathering grounds, for the lives lost AND for the mineral resources you stole from us would be good…but at the end of the day your compensation is worthless compared to what resources are still intact. You can go hang your apology, your compensation, as far as I am concerned what mineral resources that are currently in Bougainvillean soil can only increase in value! Plus Bougainville doesn't necessarily need to mine to earn an income. We have rich, fertile soil, soaring mountains, beautiful black and white sandy beaches with turquoise waters. Yes Bougainville has OPTIONS! You are not the only company or organization that knows how to fund, set up or develop a mine. If you do not want to do it on Bougainvillean terms then Bougainvilleans can look elsewhere for another more considerate, less arrogant developer.

No Tiffany it aint the Courts says Nou

BY NOU VADA

A FORMER FAN OF TIFFANY TWIVEY

SAM_3000TIFFANY TWIVEY’S CLAIMS that Papua New Guinea’s political impasse has been caused solely by the courts is unbelievably biased and her article inn PNG Attitudeis hardly a proper or a proper enough assessment of the political impasse.

It is at best a piece of propaganda from a government consultant being paid a lot of taxpayers’ money.

Twivey states: “These sorts of orders [by the court] have never, ever been made by any court in a Westminster system of democracy as they are clearly without jurisdiction and are unconstitutional.”

First of all let me just say that it is immaterial that such orders have never been given in the Westminster system. It is immaterial because Papua New Guinea is a constitutional democracy and the powers of the government’s three arms are set out in the constitution.

Twivey’s mention of the Westminster system is at best a spin-doctor tactic … to make her argument broader than it actually is. In fact her argument is narrow and misleading as you will see.

Ms Twivey opens her attack on the judiciary with the statement:

The current constitutional crisis in PNG has been created by certain members of the Supreme Court, not by O’Neill or by Somare. This has happened in three ways:

a) Unconstitutional and undemocratic Orders made by the Supreme Court

b) The refusal of Chief Justice to recognise the constitutional powers of the NEC for his removal, placing himself above the law, and

c) Refusal by certain judges to recognise the unlimited constitutional power of Parliament to legislate – particularly, the Judicial Conduct Act

We will look at Ms Twivey’s arguments on each point. We will look at her claims and see if the claims are grounded in fact and accuracy.

You can read the complete version of Part 1 at the Edebamona blog here

Protests risk losing credibility

SAM_2989There is a risk that organizers of current protests against the O’Namah regime begin to lose credibility if they become too dogmatic about “defending the Constitution”.

This blogger and millions other Papua New Guineans were delighted when the Somare’s fell spectacularly from power in a Parliamentary Coup on the 3rd of August last year. The removal of Somare then was Unconstitutional as was ruled upon later by the Supreme Court in December last year. No one took to the streets to defend the Constitution and bring back Somare then.

Compromise and Consensus are at the heart of Melanesian decision making. The people are very pragmatic and so western idealism about Constitutionality does not define how they view Power and legitimacy.

Traditional forms of Governance are still very relevant and active in most societies. The claim that it is the Constitution that keeps us together is perhaps an overstatement. It denies the existence over thousands of years of trade links between various indigenous Melanesian nations. It also perpetuates the western myth that we are primitives and therefore need a piece of paper to keep us together. It overlooks the great work done by early missionaries, Colonial administrations and traders in bringing indigenous nations together under the modern state.

What keeps us together as a people are a complex web of relationships. Whereas in the west the saying goes that “its nothing personal just business”, for Melanesians everything is personal and about relationships and friendships. The most important investment one can make in Melanesian societies is to build one’s social capital.

As such to be blinded by “protesting to defending the Constitution” risks destroying social capital and goodwill built largely by students of the University of Papua New Guinea. In many ways, today’s protestors have “missed the bus”. Occupy Waigani 1 was the first protest to Morauta Haus pretty much entirely by the University Students. Occupy Waigani 2 was a genuine civil society protest where about 10 000 Port Moresby residents marched and occupied Sir John Guise stadium. Occupy Waigani 1 and 2 have certainly forced the government to slow down on its rhetoric and keep election dates with-in the Constitutional Time-frame.

What seems to happen now with all the other “protest” movements is mere political point scoring in the lead up to the elections. This is why it is important that those who are genuinely concerned about the integrity of the Constitution do not become blinded by the “fight to defend the Constitution” and end up being used by political aspirants.

What should actually be happening now is that a coalition of intending candidates or political parties, civil society organisations, and individuals publicly announce that during the term of the next Parliament they would collectively act to repeal all the Acts created by the O’Namah regime and hold individuals and MPs accountable for breaches to the Constitution. If need be, some people may have to be tried for treason during the term of the next Parliament.

Who will be the next Prime Minister of Papua New Guinea capable of delivering justice to an oppressed people? After 37 years of Independence, the only consistency in the land of the unexpected has been the absence of justice.

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

We are a nation of free indigenous nations

SAM_2993

Today is the beginning of the end of many political careers – MANY SHORT-LIVED. Personally, I’d like to see the Minister for Sport and Member for South Fly voted out of Office. I am 99% certain he’s going out and am part of the process of ensuring that my people in South Fly do get him voted out.

I live in Port Moresby, and while city sleeker’s may be attracted to the bright lights at 5mile, set up by Governor Parkop, months after he’s skwad removed the 5 mile buai markets, the City of Port Moresby is much more filthier. Perhaps it’s because the politicians themselves have gotten themselves into a lot of dirt lately. And Governor Parkop is in bed with all these dirty politicians some of whom know how to party with bois at Sydney casinos.

The Capitalist pigs who were recently at the Prime Ministers’ political fundraiser are burning cash each time we the 99% go on strike. Things aren’t going to improve for them as they continue to back authoritarian regimes and force workers to go to work in “civilian” clothes.

There is however a risk of blind submission to the defence of PNG’s Constitution. Unlike most other Protestors, I am not someone who necessarily believes in PNGs Constitution. I lost faith in it when I was sitting in the Supreme Court when it handed down the Ramu Nickel case. Terry Kuning and Louis Medang sit at the Rai Coast of Madang Province – FAILED by a Constitution that I have recently been defending.

SAM_2987Why defend a Constitution that has for 36 years FAILED the people of PNG and continues to do so?

Recently, I have been talking about how this Constitution perpetuates the Colonial legacy. How this Constitution legitimizes the institutions of colonialism and in doing so perpetuates the subjugation of indigenous Melanesians.

One of my friends IN Port Moresby could barely recognize the boy who came from Madang only a few weeks ago. Having given him a lecture over the phone about decolonizing the mind, he could not understand why I was supporting protests in defence of the Constitution.

My friend and I are not voting this election.

Firstly, if the elections are differed from April 27th to May 19th and we do vote during the differed elections, WE LEGITIMIZE THIS GOVERNMENT’S ACTIONS. By not voting we express our sovereign right as men who are born free OF NOT handing over any legitimacy to crooks. In doing so, we retain our sovereign right to protest illegitimate regimes.

Secondly, elections are a fa├žade. Capitalists put money behind YES MEN who end up winning a popularity contest because they had the money to buy popularity. By voting, WE LEGITIMIZE AN UNDEMOCRATIC, UNMELANESIAN, AND RIGGED ELECTROL SYSTEM. Many honest, decent people can’t afford to stand for Public Office thus money determines who gets into office - not the voter.

Those who do not vote have the right to complain about politicians. Those who do vote have no right in essence because by being part of the electoral process they have consented to the election of corrupt politicians.

Papua New Guineans have waited for 37 years for Governments installed under this Constitution, to deliver and are still waiting. Perhaps it’s time to STOP WAITING FOR DEVELOPMENT TO COME. By protesting, I’ve inadvertently been perpetuating the myth that salvation comes from a foreign concept of Government.

For many rural Communities, it wouldn’t matter if a dog was Prime Minister because they’d wake up tomorrow morning and live much the same life their ancestors did for over 50 00 years. Perhaps in decolonizing my mind, I failed recently to recognize the inherent strength of this Papua New Guinean connectedness to land.

My friend reminded me that what truly defines a Papua New Guinean is the fact that we Papua New Guineans own land and that our bones will one day lie in the soil alongside our ancestors. Our traditional leaders were never bought and sold like the horse-trading that happens in Parliament under the nose of this Constitution.

This Constitution produced a State that killed 15 000 Bougainvilleans, Destroyed the Fly River and is creating suffering amongst the Watut and Labu people of Morobe. Why defend it?

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Our ancestors had a model of development that served them well. Today, trail-blazing Communities like the Saussie in Madang Province are a leading example how of Our Papua New Guineans Ways are far more relevant and superior to anything suggested by World Bank and AUSAID Consultants.

Em graun blong mipela! Graun em laip! We are a nation of free and independent indigenous nations.

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Trade Union Congress Chief says Protest will Go ahead

BY Belinda Kora
383404_206673436116061_187275141389224_431494_1548131564_nPASKA” PROTEST WILL GO AHEAD”

The Trade Union Workers will go ahead to convene their planned protest march to Parliament today. That’s the word from the Secretary General, John Paska, when called up this morning. He also states that Trade Union Movement will be meeting this morning to discuss and organise themselves to ensure it is a trouble-free march, with the full cooperation of the police force. NGO’s, the Civil Society Organisations and Union members are also expected to front up at the Parliament House this morning in order to petition the Government.

COMMANDERS OFFICE ON ARREST AND STANCE

The NCD/Central Commanders Office this morning dispelled rumors that a warrant of arrest was out for Mr John Paska. The office says they will not be arresting anyone today, but will be out in full force to ensure that opportunists do not take advantage of the situation today. It is further appealing to the Unions and other organisations to defer the march to later, as they are concerned with the current situation within the force itself, which is still to be sorted out. It says, given the current impasse struggle” it is advisable that the protest be deferred to a later date. It is appealing to city residents to go on their normal lives for today.

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Monday, April 23, 2012

WAN PIPOL, WAN NATION AGAINST CORRUPT MPs

BY CRITIC PNG

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Don't sit and let your future be destroyed by self serving older men who think they own this country. We the 7 million people are allowing 109 [MPs] ruin our lives by doing what they want.

The police who are supposed to be protecting us are protecting them.

They spend our money on what they want while our mothers and children die.

O'Neill has lied many times to us.

Now they want to control the Judiciary, the police and the media? I say NO!

Let's take back our Nation!

APRIL 23 - RADIO JOURNALIST THE LATEST VICTIM OF POLICE BEATING

(by Toa Sime, NBC)

562012_3843356922920_1248013028_3799560_616822896_nA journalist with the National Broadcasting Corporation, is the latest victim of the brutality of the Highlands-based mobile unit, currently deployed in Port Moresby.
The reporter was returning from a late assignment with the unions on Saturday night, when he was assaulted.
He was dropped off by an NCD-based policeman, who also suffered severe bashing.
The pair, and another civilian, were kicked, punched, and gun-butted by members of the unit, who were allegedly under the influence of liquor.
The policeman, attached with the Six Mile Police Station, was also stoned on the head, while in full police uniform.
The Officer was also robbed off an undisclosed amount of money, while they all had their mobile phones ripped off and smashed in front of them.
The recent bashing of our reporter comes days after Commissioner Tom Kulunga, had promised an investigation into last week's assault of members of the Central Province Highway Patrol Unit, which has caused a rift among the force.

source: https://www.facebook.com/groups/129190073771877/413219732035575/

New Media bringing rural South Fly to the World

South Fly featured on National EMTV NEWS last night

Last night the people of South Fly in Western Province were featured on National Television here in Papua New Guinea. One of the Challenges I have had to deal with as a blogger is to get stories to the folks in the bush and to bring stories from the bush to the city. It has been a challenge about being relevant and not being too elitist.

Last month I began by connecting my people in South Fly to Twitter via SMS. I created their Twitter accounts and activated SMS so that they would receive Twitter messages via SMS and also post on Twitter via SMS. The people have embraced the technology and I have been a victim of my own success as I have to keep up with demand for activating phones.

From villagers on the Kiwai island, along the Fly River towards Suki in the North-west to Morehead in the South-west and the villagers of Trans-Fly, I have connected villagers from almost every corner of the electorate.

I’ve also created a blog called South Fly 2012 and am posting some Tweets from villagers there.

I wrote an article that was featured on several blogs and was privileged to have the South Fly story broadcasted last night as the first news item on National EM TV NEWS. As soon as the news was broadcasted on National Television, twitter messages were sent out to villagers informing them that they had been featured on National Television.

In the short term I hope Twitter influences the outcome of this year’s election. I look forward to seeing the current MP Sali Subam being Voted Out of Office. In the long-term Twitter is a tool for organizing communities, providing awareness messages, disaster alerts and keeping the new Member for South Fly accountable.

Friday, April 20, 2012

Questions raised over accuracy of MCC’s claim

imageQuestions are being raised over claims by the Chinese Miners and their Australian Partner Highlands Pacific as to the accuracy of their claim that

“the spill did not involve  sulfuric acid as some locals have reported… sodium hydroxide is a much less caustic than the acid.”

Firstly, the statement by MCC Ramu Nico confuses the chemistry of both substances. SULFURIC ACID is a STRONG ACID and SODIUM HYDROXIDE (NaOH) is a STRONG BASE. They’re both equally “CAUSTIC”. It is therefore misleading to say that sodium hydroxide is less caustic.

The folks at MCC and Highlands Pacific can do a little chemistry lab experiment on whoever wrote that press statement to prove to us that NaOH “less caustic”.

A document that is publicly available on the  Highlands Pacific website, states at page 7:

"A sulphuric acid plant producing 3,350 tonnes per day of 98.5% pure sulphuric acid will be installed to supply the acid requirements for the high pressure acid leach, lime boil and solvent extraction stages within the refinery. Feed stock for the plant, comprising some 360,000 tonnes of sulphur per annum will be supplied to the site by bulk shipping over the project dedicated deep water port. The acid plant will produce a large amount of steam, which will be efficiently utilised for various process heating requirements."

According to an April 17th 2012 update by Highlands Pacific, load commissioning of the Ramu Mine project continues today. The update states:

“The mine commenced treating ore through one of the three high pressure autoclaves on 4 March 2012 and has now been operating continuously for 6 weeks with no major processing issues. In that time the process plant has treated 300,000 tonnes of slurried ore producing 486 tonnes of mixed nickel cobalt hydroxide intermediate product.”

What these two documents reveal is that a LARGE AMOUNT OF SULPHURIC ACID and limestone has been used by Ramu Nicco to treated 300, 000 tonnes of ore producing 486 tonnes of mixed nickel cobalt hydroxide.

Using Highlands Pacific’s formula of 0.2 tonnes of Sulphuric Acid per per tonne of dry ore, [0.2 tonnes Sulphuric acid X 300 000 tonnes ore] [found on page 6] we estimate that 60 0000 tonnes of Sulphuric Acid has been used during the Commissioning Stage since the 4th of March 2012.

Now, 60 000 tonnes of Sulphuric Acid is a lot of ACID for the Chinese to play with. Do you trust them when they say:

“the spill did not involve sulfuric acid as some locals have reported… sodium hydroxide is a much less caustic than the acid.”

LANDOWNER TO ESSO HIGHLANDS EXPAT: “DON'T COME TO PNG TREAT US LIKE DIRT AND STEAL FROM US”

Landowner fronted up wanting to meet with someone from Esso Highlands inside...they did not let him in...he parked for almost 1 hour outside tooting his horn....

the expats were too scared to talk to him...so they sent some locals to do it....G4S could do nothing....he told the expats "DON'T COME TO PNG TREAT US LIKE DIRT AND STEAL FROM US"

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20 000 Signatures to STOP Experimental Sea-bed Mining

VIA ACT NOW

Bismark BoyACT NOW! recently launched a email action addressed to Pacific Island Leaders, requesting an end to experimental seabed mining in the region. The basis for the concern was in relation to the environmental and social sustainability issue surrounding this "first of it's kind" mining and it's long term impact on coastal communities. 

Last week, ACT NOW! extended this campaign as more Pacific islands governments have began issuing licenses to foreign companies, to undertake this potentially destructive mining activity. Our aim is to obtain 20,000 signatures in the lead up to Pacific Heads of States meeting in the Cook Islands. We need your support to spread the message and gather in the signatures of concerned peoples of the Pacific.

Attached to this blog article is the paper petition. Please collect signatures from your friends, relatives and send us copies of the signature pages to info@actnowpng.org or post to ACT NOW!, P.O Box 5218, Boroko, NCD.

Please note also that in order to assist us to publicly acknowledge your contribution towards this campaign, please state your name and address on the signature page, and send to us by 31st July 2012.

_______________________________

EXTERNAL LINKS

petition signature pagedocx.pdf
31.01 KB

PLEASE HELP PETITION THE HEADS OF PACIFIC ISLAND STATES TO STOP EXPERIMENTAL SEABED MINING IN OUR PACIFIC WATERS.pdf
84.82 KB

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Chinese miner spills Toxic Chemicals into Basamuk Bay

SAM_0287I have just spoken to Terry Kuning from Mindere Village, Basamuk, and he just confirmed reports that there was a major spillage of Sulfuric Acid at the Ramu Nico Basamuk site. The nearby reefs at Basamuk Bay have been completely BLEACHED. The Chinese Government and their Australian Partner Highlands Pacific have started to KILL the BASAMUK BAY and soon they will be dumping toxic mine wastes into the Bismarck Sea.

Here are some responses as this news was first posted on Facebook.

Derek Maru : This is bad. Very bad. We need to do something

Barbara Collins when will they accept that the mines are damaging everything?

Clinton Mea: These money hungry vampires have destroyed most the earth already including what they call thee own backyards. Local people must not let mining companies and the like onto there land. You cant eat money...

No man shall be judge unto his own Cause ~ Edmund Burke

BY TOKAUT TOKSTRET

ladyjusticeFundamental Pillars (5of9) of the Rule of Law, as espoused by Prof Dicey and accepted in most common law jurisdictions:

1. Supremacy of the Law-everyone is subject to the law, including lawmakers, law enforcers, law interpreters.

2. Due Process-Laws must be made and implemented following due process to settle the perception of justice.

3. Prospective laws-laws must be prospective and not retrospective. This increases CERTAINTY OF LAW, and ensures perception of justice. Uncertainty of law is bad for justice. Will you change your footy rules after a football game has been played, and apply it to that game, making yourself the winner, whereas in the precious rules you WERE THE LOSER?

4. And underlying Moral basis for law-law should be based on a fundamental moral code.

5. Independent Judiciary-the judiciary must nor be subject to control of the legislature or executive or anyone. And
Must make its interpretation without fear or favour.
"The rule of law is better than
that of any individual." -Aristotle
"The King himself ought not to be subject to man, but subject to God and
the law, because the law makes him King". Lord CJ Coke (1610)

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

15 Bridges, 3 Ships, A politician and Polisyndrom

by KlairehSays Blog

216836_142225992513975_100001797260330_253105_2014287_nToday is Tuesday the 20th of March 2012, the current parliament is meant to be having its final session for the year 2012! Now how is that for excitement?! Usually the routine is that if you had an exciting weekend then the week should be relatively mediocre, alas it seems that this won’t be the case for us here in this wonderfully exciting country of ours.

So the 411 for today is the Sydney Casino that helped reveal Mr Namah’s slight case of homophobia is 'dismissing' a number of employees (middle managers) because they ‘breached employment policies’ and revealed some highly sensitive client information. Yikes! You’ve got to kind of feel sorry for them as they probably didn’t realize the client they were revealing information about was a high ranking member of their neighboring country’s government. There is two questions that I know I’d like answered and they are 1) how much do our politicians get paid? Because if they get paid enough to comfortably gamble Aus. $800 000-then I’m running for elections come 2017. 2) Who leaked the story? Isn’t it strange that these allegations come out almost a year after the events transpired?

The official opening ceremony of the 15 bridges (how do you open a bridge?) in the Autonomous Region of Bougainville has had its limelight ‘stolen’ by the ill-thought-out plan to burn the MV Solomon Queen and MV Kopra 1 and 2. All of us empathize with the relatives of those who have lost loved ones aboard the MV Rabaul Queen, we demand that there be justice for those lost and their families! BUT to resort to that type of ‘hoodlumism’ when you don’t get what you demand when you demand - is very unbecoming. Who will take us seriously when the referendum period comes (2015 is only three years away) if we are behaving without rationale?

As promised last week a story on pukpuks, Papua New Guineans and Australians although not necessarily in that order. Have you ever heard of the ‘Crocodile Prize’? It’s an award that’s bestowed upon Papua New Guinean writers BY the Australian Government, as a way to encourage more writers and to promote cultural identity through this art. So now the Australian government has decided that it won’t be funding this ‘Crocodile Prize’ this year, fair enough-maybe it’s time we looked at other ways of sponsoring this. I am confident that publishing and printing houses out there in the big wide world, would love to publish and print ‘raw, exotic talent’ from raw exotic lands that are different from the usual materialistic garbage and fake spiritualism.

A last word for today’s episode is ‘Polisyndrome’! Learn it, memorize it but DO NOT live it. You see experience is something that is supposed to come with Age, Wisdom is supposed to come after Experience...Yet it appears we the people of Papua New Guinea have been retrogressing at an ever increasing pace for the last couple of decades-we WERE much wiser, despite our lack of experience and young age 37 years ago! Polisyndrome strikes again (politicians syndrome is a virus that can only be cured with a good dose of 'MORAL STANDARDS').

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

UNITECH IN CRISIS

By Nou Vada

UNITECH is in a state of chaos.
Vehicles burnt. Classes boycotted. School locked down.

Chancellor Philip Stagg's Official Vehicle burnt by students

Students found out this week that newly appointed Vice Chancellor Dr. Albert Schram, formerly of the Maastrict University in the Netherlands, was sacked by the UNITECH Council for reasons as yet not known.
There is wide speculation from students that Dr. Schram was sacked after he uncovered widespread mismanagement and corruption on the part of other administrators of one of Papua New Guinea's biggest Universities.The speculation is that the sacking of Dr. Schram's sacking was initiated by UNITECH's Chancellor Philip Stagg.


Dr. Albert Schram, the sacked Vice Chancellor of UNITECH

There is as yet no official statement from UNITECH's Council, which is the highest Governing body of the University, to address the speculation.
Today UNITECH students went on the rampage and set fire to a couple of vehicles including Chancellor Stagg's official Vehicle and the Registrar of student's 15 seater bus in anger over the surprise sacking of the Vice-Chancellor.
It is understood by Edebamona Blog that students are in a lock-down at Taraka Campus and the main gates are closed and no-one is walking around. It is understood also that classes have been boycotted and a 48 hour ultimatum has been given to the Council to reverse its decision and for Council members to resign. It is not clear what the students will do if the Council does not comply.


image

Bus vandalised with the words "We want VC Dr. Schram"

It is also not clear if the actions of the students have been organised by the Student Representative Council.
Funnily enough, there appears to be an information blackout on the part of the Students. Numerous attempts by this blogger to verify conflicting reports and get situation reports on the ground at Taraka have been met with statements like "No comment".
As a fellow tertiary student at UPNG, this blogger has appealed to UNITECH students to break the silence now:
"IF THE WHOLE TARAKA CAMPUS HAS UNDERTAKEN TO KEEP SILENT THEN I AM TELLING YOU THAT IS THE BIGGEST MISTAKE.... PREPARE A PRESS STATEMENT BEFORE THE COUNCIL PREPARES ONE AND FRAMES THE ARGUMENT AGAINST YOU.... DO IT AND DO IT NOW BEFORE THE PUBLIC OPINION BECOMES ENTRENCHED AGAINST YOU
TAKE IT FROM THE UPNG KIDS WHO ORGANISED OCCUPY WAIGANI"
While the entire local media is poised and focused to events transpiring at the Courts, the Parliament and the Police Precincts here in the Nation's Capital, UNITECH is in a state of chaos, and with this prolonged silence, the rest of the nation is confused as to what's happening.
It is understood that at approximately 4pm 17/04/2012 the Vice-Chancellor addressed students at a meeting, though it is not clear yet what exactly the meeting was about.
The next two days will be very interesting indeed for UNITECH.

Students mobilizing at the main gate at UNITECH

Monday, April 16, 2012

Public outrage at MPs as Port Moresby Hospital closes X-ray Unit

BY OCCUPY WAIGANI MOVEMENT

The Radiology Department of Papua New Guinea’s National Referral Hospital has been closed since Thursday Last week.

The news was first broken by an Tweet that appeared under the pseudonym @Teetross.

#PNG ur Capital City's Xray Unit has been closd since Thurs..WTF?! Adlt TB Xray screning Stopd 2”, @Teetross tweeted.

Hours later the Occupy Waigani movement posted a picture on their Facebook Page, calling on the Deputy Prime Minister and the Health minister to look into the matter. Both men were last seen at the hospital dishing out goodies on the eve of the major protest by the Occupy Waigani movement in Port Moresby.image

At the time of Publication of this blog post, there were 58 “likes” and 30 comments posted regarding the photo. Most commentators slammed the two men for what they saw as electioneering.

Ms Serena Sasingan, the Executive Director of The Voice Inc. a group that’s gaining influence amongst PNG’s  middle-class youth commented,

“What’s their slogan again "Young and vibrant leaders"..i feel sick when i see their billboards :/.”

Her sentiments were shared by most other commentators. One lone voice decided to take a much different view,

“People by now should understand, politicians are legislators, bureaucrats are implementers, so if its a politicians last visit before the election, he is mindful of his own pocket because he knows for sure that what he says will be implemented 10 years later or never and that the little people do not know and are fooled by sweet talks. These politicians must tell the truth for the little people to understand and that will make the country better.” Ako Omae PC commented.

Another commentator Eddie Connors, explained the reason for the closure of the X-ray Unit,

“My old man and woman were referred to POMGen for X-Ray. I took them both there last week Wednesday and were turned back. The nursing officer said that they have ran out off X-Ray film. So anyway we had to leave...so much to be desired for better health services not only in towns and cities but also in rural PNG,” he wrote.

The latest closure of the X-ray units means that an important diagnostic tools for various medical conditions would be unavailable to doctors. Screening for Tuberculosis has been affected.

Port Moresby General Hospital suffers from chronic shortages of drugs and medical supplies and continuously has break-downs of important bio-medical equipment. There has been no political will to address fundamental health needs of the Hospital, apart from pulling off publicity stunts.

Saturday, April 14, 2012

Who is @PurePapua and what does he stand for?

 

Originally published on moui.net  BY ANARCHYON APRIL - 12 - 2012

  On Twitter he is simply known as @PurePapua « a Papuan-rights activist. His goal is to see the liberation of West Papua from the imperialist, Indonesia. He believes in self-determination, he believes in the right of an ancient indigenous population to decide on their future, their land, their sea, their heritage, and their children.

Can @PurePapua achieve what he and many others have decided decades ago? West Papuans risk their lives, their families, their livelihood, their way of life ~ they risk everything, to be free from the yoke of slavery, to live without the rotting touch of the colonists, to embrace each other and live as free men and women of their land.

He tweets, like a frenzied whirlwind abomination gripped by hunger. He tweeted:

“West Papua: Loss of freedom, violent assault, environmental destruction and total disregard for human life”

A simple tweet, but meaningful, heartfelt, surrounded by depths of burning emotions, especially one that displays a cynical view of West Papua, the lack of international attention, and the continued tyranny of Indonesia.

Follow him, ignore him, hate him, admire him, I don’t fucking care. I know that he can count on me for support, for my arm, for my fist, for my compassion and for my desire to see freedom for West Papua. I see @PurePapua as my brother, and I stand by his side in our quest to enable West Papuans the freedom for self-determination. For the Present, for the Future, for Life.

Take the Truth to Australia Tour on this May

BY KEITH JACKSON

martynIT HAS BEEN QUITE A TORTUOUS journey but Papua New Guinea’s best known and most quoted blogger, Martyn Namorong, squeezed his passport out of an inefficient and corrupt immigration system this afternoon.

Planning for the resumption of his Australian lecture and meet the media tour has already begun.

The Take the Truth to Australia Tour was supposed to have kicked off this week but, when reality and the PNG passport office collided, the latter won, to the  dismay of the growing ranks of Martyn’s Papua New Guinean and Australian admirers.

Now the resumed and rejuvenated tour is likely to take place some time in the period after mid-May and, unlike the previous itinerary, will include Canberra as well as Melbourne, Sydney and Brisbane.

We thank the key sponsors of this visit – Victoria University, Twivey Lawyers, Nowek Pty Ltd and Jackson Wells Pty Ltd, as well as the many individual donors who understand the need for voices from the buai market as well as the academics and big shots to talk with the Australian people.

Friday, April 13, 2012

New York: #OccupyWallStreet salutes #OccupyWaigani

 

Via occupywallstreet.org

occupy papua new guineau
Over 10,000 gather at Sir John Guise Stadium in Papua New Guinea

In another example of the power of popular resistance, Papua New Guineans this week appear to have successfully stopped the government from delaying elections and implementing a controversial Judicial Conduct Law that would allow the legislature to remove judges. In front of a massive crowd organized by labor unions, churches, social media groups, and civil society organizations, PNG Prime Minister Peter O'Neill promised to hold elections on time.

The protests were organized in part by student activists and bloggers affiliated with Occupy Waigani, a group that formed last month to occupy Parliament in protest of the Judicial Conduct Law. Among other efforts, Occupiers in PNG are also working to address the exploitation of local resources by corporate interests and unequal development in the country. #OccupyWallStreet stands in solidarity with Occupiers and dissidents everywhere. (See below for a timeline of events in PNG!)

Occupy Wall Street has always been part of a global movement for economic justice and people-powered democracy. In addition to the Arab Spring protests that continue to challenge oppressive regimes from Tunisia to Bahrain, #OWS drew much of our inspiration from the Indignados in Spainand Portugal, the popular assemblies in Greece, the Icelandic Revolution against debt and austerity, the on-going Chilean student protests, and more. Following the Occupation of Liberty Square in New York City, Occupy protests took place on every continent. On the October 15, 2011 global day of action alone, Occupy demonstrations occurred in at least 950 cities in 82 countries.

The Occupy movement has taken hold across the world and remains especially active in countries like Australia, the Netherlands, the UK, Ireland, Canada, Germany, and Italy. Last week in Russia, protesters erected tents in Red Square during a protest against government corruption (predictably, they were quickly arrested by Russian police). However, Occupy protests have appeared in all parts of the world, from China to Argentina, and each place has contributed a unique perspective and experience to the Global Revolution to take back our lives from the Global 1%, in whatever form they take.

While our causes may appear disparate, we share a common opposition to abusive government and economic inequality. Whether by the greedy removal of vital fuel subsidies for the 99% in Nigeria last year or the imposition of military rule in Egypt, the people everywhere will no longer tolerate elite misrule. Everywhere, we are demanding true self-government and real democracy - not governments run by banksters, autocrats, and corrupt politicians. And everywhere, our diverse and localized movements share tactics like the peaceful occupation of public space, mass demonstrations, nonviolent resistance, and the use of social media and horizontal consensus-based democracy to organize online and in the world. As activists in all parts of the world borrow ideas and imagery from one another and adapt them to local struggles, we learn from each other's innovations.

#OccupyWaigani

Last month, a student-led movement opposed to a law that would allow the government to silence dissident judges spawned an Occupy movement in Papua New Guinea. Although international media was completely silent on the events that followed, the protest grew to include broad support when the government voted to suspend elections. Earlier this week, 10,000 people gathered in the capitol of Papua New Guineau and forced the government to reverse their position. Again, beside minor coverage in Australian news, international media has been suspiciously silent. However, the activists themselves have not - using blogs and other social media, protest organizers kept their supporters around the world informed about events as they happened on the ground.

As described by one blogger in a post about Occupy Waigani:

David Wissink, the spokesman for Morobe Mines Joint Venture [a joint Australian/South African mining company in PNG], asked the question of yesterday’s historic protest: ‘So in reality what was gained?’

Most Papua New Guineans know the answer to this question. But for David’s benefit, let’s spell it out.

1) We showed the government that they are accountable to us. Now the politicians realise we are not going to let them get away with blatant disregard for us and our rights.
2) We showed solidarity. Good things start to happen when ordinary Papua New Guineans stand together and start talking about issues we share as a nation.
3) We showed that we are better than them. They are violent – they let our people be murdered for LNG. They don’t respect our rights – they rushed through an unconstitutional Bill without asking us at all (and now they want us to stop talking about it). They try and divide us and cause conflict between us. WE are peaceful – we marched peacefully, as a nation, and started talking about a better way for all.

David, and mining companies like the one he works for, doesn’t like it when Papua New Guineans speak out. It makes him nervous that Papua New Guineans are thinking for themselves. He thinks: “Maybe they will realise they don’t want or need companies like Newcrest telling them what to think. “Maybe they will realise they don’t need to support the corrupt government which makes so much money for the miners.¨ “Maybe they will realise they don’t need mining or foreign companies at all, because they have a better way of making a living (it’s called land).’”

So WE say congratulations to the protesters, who love their country and believe foreign corporations like MMJV and the government they corrupt are holding us back from a better way (our way). And don’t let them try and tell you that you are violent trouble-makers. They are the violent ones, stealing your land and your money. You are the peacemakers: and the future.

Occupy Waigani and their allies and supporters still need our solidarity to ensure the promise of true democracy is delivered, not only to the people of Papua New Guinea, but to everyone, everywhere.

OCCUPY TOGETHER!

student assembly in PNG
Students gather at a popular assembly at the University of PNG

Timeline

  • March 21 - One day after it is introduced and after virtually no serious consideration, the Judicial Conduct Law passes the legislature with a wide majority. Protesters call it the ¨Shut up the judges¨ bill.
  • March 22 - Bloggers and activists call for #OccupyWaigani. (Waigani is the government district of Port Moresby, the capitol.) After a meeting at the University of PNG Forum Square that lasted until 4am, students make and announce plans to ¨occupy the grounds of Parliament¨ in protest of the law, defying police orders not to. The protesters demand that a representative from the government meet with them or they threaten to march directly on the Prime Minister´s office.
  • March 23 - 2500 UPNG students and allies march to office of the Prime Minister Peter O´Neill in Waigani. A stand off with police ensues, who eventually allow the protesters to pass with escort. The students deliver an ultimatum to the PM demanding the removal of the Judicial Conduct Law and declare they will wait for response before planning more actions.
  • March 25 - In a televised nationwide address, the PM refuses to remove the law.
  • March 26 - The Community Coalition Against Corruption, students from the University of PNG, the PNG Trade Union Congress, and PNG social media networks hold a joint press conference announcing they are considering a national general strike with ¨sit-in protests in urban areas¨ by students at PNG's main universities in Port Moresby, Lae, Goroka, Madang and Rabaul.
  • March 29 - Over 4700 students skip class at the University of PNG.
  • March 30 - Thousands more students strike at Unitech in Lae, calling it #OccupyTopTown. Some also start using #OccupyPNG now that there are at least two cities participating.
  • April 5 - A student forum meets again to discuss the next course of action. During the assembly, they recieve word that the legislature voted to defer elections by a vote of 63-11.
  • April 6 - Students and Occupiers on social media release the following statement:

    We the people of Papua New Guinea are now DEMANDING the Government to RESCIND THIS MOTION TO ‘DEFER THE ELECTIONS’ IMMEDIATELY!! We DEMAND that the Elections go ahead at the appointed time. By the 27th of April, the Writs must be issued and due election process allowed to occur. We the people of Papua New Guinea declare that we will NOT RELENT IN OUR PROTEST UNTIL OUR DEMANDS ARE COMPLIED WITH!! A Coalition comprising: Trade Unions, Business Houses, TIPNG. CCAC, Civil Society Organizations, University Students, Churches and Citizens will convene a NATIONAL DAY OF ACTION and MARCH TO PARLIAMENT. [...] WEAR YOUR INDEPENDENCE DAY PNG COLOUR T-SHIRTS. WE WILL MARCH, AND WE WILL PROTEST, AND WE WILL CAMP OUTSIDE THE PARLIAMENT HOUSE UNTIL PARLIAMENT RESCINDS THE MOTION TO DEFER THE ELECTIONS!!

  • April 8 - Via Twitter and other social media, student leaders and activists continue to share links to #OWS, Adbusters, and Take The Square information on how to occupy.
  • April 9 - Another student meeting in Forum Square is held. Student leader Nou Vada tells the media:

    ¨O'Neill has said whatever marches on Tuesday will be illegal... We need to either listen to the lawbreaker's pronouncement of law and obey or act in what is purportedly civil disobedience, as the students did a few weeks back, and negotiate our way through the blockades and the cocked weapons.¨

  • April 10 - 10,000 Papua New Guineans converge on Sir John Guise Stadium in Port Moseby to protest the delay of elections and the Judicial Conduct Law. There are several Occupy-inspired signs and banners and it is organized on Twitter using #OccupyWaigani. Student, labor, and religious leaders speak out and the crowd declares ¨We Are Parliament!¨ Most of the city is shut down and there is heavy police presence around the square. Some looting occurs elsewhere, and protesters blame police for only paying attention to the protest. The Prime Minister with heavy escort arrives to address the massive crowd personally and is heavily booed. He then promises to hold elections as planned and remove the Judicial Conduct Law (as long as a controversial judge agrees to step down) and receives cheers. Many still question whether he is trust-worthy and will carry out his promises.
  • April 11 - As the legislature has not yet rescinded the plan to delay elections, protesters say they are making contingency plans in the event the Prime Minister and the government do not hold elections as promised. A court has, however, issued an injunction against the Judicial Conduct Law.

Sources:

On Twitter:
@OccupyWaigani
@Tavurvur
@Mangiwantok
@Ranggum
@NouVada
@OurPacificWays

Blogs:
PNG Students Protesting Against Judicial Conduct Law Undeterred by Police Warning
Student protesters and civil society look at options after O´neill refusal to back down
Occupy Waigani As It Unfolded
Social Media Driving New Chapter of PNG Consciousness