Tuesday, 27 November 2012

Xmas cheer at CLCs

Digicel Foundation kicked off its Christmas activities with a visit to two Learning Centres (CLCs) at Ugabega in Vadavada and Mutineo at 9-Mile outside Port Moresby last week.

About 130 children attending these centres received presents from Digicel Foundation with the generous help of Digicel PNG staff volunteers who took some time off work to share the Christmas spirit of giving.

Digicel Foundation helping thousands throughout PNG
The celebrations for both CLCs was twofold; celebrating the upcoming festive Christmas season as well as witnessing the graduation of CLC pre-school students who will continue their education at formal elementary and primary schools in the nation’s capital next year.

Digicel Foundation Chief Executive Officer Marina van der Vlies said: “When you see the humble beginnings of our CLC and the strides they have taken to become sustainable, you cannot help but admire their passion, commitment and tenacity to overcome the odds.”

Mutineo CLC was a great role model for other community learning centres to emulate. Digicel Foundation first visited the Mutineo settlement pre-school in July 2009 and was very impressed by the great work being done by the Morobe couple, Tirimo and Gaume Zakemo, and their community helpers. 

It was their joint vision that started a pre-school in the settlement of Nine-Mile, Morobe Block. Nine-Mile is one of the largest settlements in Port Moresby but has no basic education services within the settlement to teach the young children to read and write. 

It was Tirimo and Gaume who started raising funds to construct a bush material shelter to start their humble little pre-school. Digicel Foundation, in recognising their efforts, their commitment and passion, funded a classroom container in 2009. Since then, the school has grown from 60 to more than 120 children. 

Over the last three years, 129 children have graduated into formal elementary school. Many of these children consistently achieve top results in their grades showing that an early start to education is beneficial. 

Gaume Zakemo said at the graduation that this was the fourth year of the operation of the school.
PC Online

Today's Drum

Shed light, please!

Can the Government or someone shed some light on whether the Governor-General’s Office has the power and mandate to put out a public tender for the refurbishment of the Governor-General’s main administration office? There have been numerous adverts running in the dailies from the GG’s office. Shouldn’t the Central Supply and Tenders board take charge of that? We are not saying it’s wrong, we are not questioning the powers of the Government House but it just looks weird that such a tender should be done that way. Someone explain.

What was he thinking?
P. ENGEE - thedrum@spp.com.pg
A family of three sets out to a shop at China town over the weekend for a feed. Father picks up an item that his son desperately needs for his school Christmas choir and asks the Chinese man if there more of those items. “Any more you have in stock?” father asks. The Chinese shop owner looks angrily at him as he repeats his question: “you have more of this bro?” The shop owner calls in a Police friend to his surprise who comes in to say to the father — “you will be arrested if you don’t leave now! Sure enough, they were going to take the family to Boroko police station but after a good 25-30 minutes argument things were resolved — pays to understand English! What was the man thinking?


Talking about Chinese shops, just down town Kone shops an old Simbu mother, doesn’t really speak pidgin and no knowledge of English – but very smart in selling buai at the roadside. She pops into one of the Chinese shops with a K50 note a few boys gave her to pay for betelnut and smoke the previous night. Chinese man sees that the K50 note is fake, and immediately calls for police to come over and arrest the poor mother. Missy mama Simbu as she is known knew exactly what to do – even before the police arrived, she took to the paper down the road to lay her complaint. To date she has not retrieved her K50.

Embarrassing ordeal!

Netball medal presentation saw a mix up of the medals today. Instead of giving bronze to Morobe, they were presented with gold medals though they are the bronze medalists for this year. Netball champions for this year NCD were given the bronze medals. The players realized the mistake and had to exchange after the presentation. Come on, organizers, make sure you give the right medals to each team to save you some embarrassment.

The PNG BTA Ministry

By Andrew Kwimberi

I have one need to share with you all to pray and see how you might help us. Many of you know PNG BTA and those involved with this ministry very well. This ministry has been around for almost 40 years now since its humble begingings. It was started by some of our founding members of TSCF ministry in the late 60s. 

BTA Board Chair, Andrew Kwimberi
For those on this network who do not know BTA and what it does, we basically work with our PNG/local language communities to translate the Bible into their mother tongues. Apart from that we also help them with litracy work in developing materials for them to teach the people how to read and write in their own tokples. 

This helps them to read their tokples Bible. Also we use these materials for elementary schools run by those trained by our litracy department. These are core activties we are involved in apart from others. If you need more information, please go to our website: www.pngbta.com.pg or just type in PNG Bible Translation Association on google search and it will take you there. 

BTA's vision: Our vision is to see Papa New Guineans transformed by the translated word of God. When people understand the truth, obey and live by it every day, their lives will be transformed. This change will have positive and restorative effect on their marriages, their families, their homes, their neighbours and wil flow down to their communities, provinces and country. Many will begin to do their work honestly and sincerely. 

Fear of God will permeate every sector of our nation. A nation is made up of people, who are directly and indirectly related to thousand of tribes, clans and familes. It is not made of money, buidings, roads and bridges. Those things were created or built to serve the people. 

Just as the Church as an invisible organic body that is made up of believers across the world including PNG, a nation consist of its citizens. It is therefore a social and spiritual creature and it is the activities of its people that give it meaning and purpose. As the people are, so is the nation. 

I believe that a genuine transformation will only take place when the truth is understood and accepted in the heart, which transforms the mind and the whole being or person. 

Our mother-tongue is the heart or soul's language and when the truth is communicated in our heart language, our souls respond to it just like a plant that respond to the sunshine. Just as a plant grows towards the sun, our souls will grow towards God when truths are communicated through the language they know best. 

When our people in the rural villages and communities change, our country will truly change and be transformed for God's glory and for his pleasure. 

But it must start with the Church of God. It must start with Christians in those rural communities. Our country is struggling because our people still hold onto the gods of this world. I heard a testimony of one old man in telifomin saying: "The country is not run by those in Waigani. We run it". 

He was one of the powerful spiritual leaders in his area who were engaged in witchcraft activities. A number of their leaders surrendered and gave their lives when Pastor Dian Warep conducted crusades in their villages some years ago.

The above realization has shifted my heart from the corridors of power, politics and business in Waigani to working with BTA to support its vision to reach out to our people in the remote communities. 

I am slowly making inroads into some of the areas and where I have set my feet, it has always been heartbreaking experiences of seeing our people struggling with very little or no government services. Everyday is a struggle. While they suffer like this, those who already has enough are cointuing to fill their pockets. My heart breaks so much when I hear of Christians are part of this corrupt network. Lord have mercy on us! 

When God's people are truly tranformed and allow God to come and dwell among his people, success and prosperity becomes natural consequences of his presence. See the story of Obed-idom in 2 Samuel 6:1-12. See also Haggai chapter 1. God's presence breaks ignorance and opens the eyes of our understanding. He restores sanity and enables us to think clearly. 

He releases the untapped potential in us to invent new ideas and ways of doing things. He doesn't pour money out of nowhere, as some expects but gives us the ability to create wealth. It only takes a few in those communities to trigger this revival that will lead to national transformation. A genuine revival from God will always lead to societal tranformation, not just good feelings. 

While some of us like myself are supporting ourselves to do this work, as tent-makers, there are others who have to raise their own support to do this work. Unfortunately many struggle because their support is not enough to pay for their day-to-day family and personal expenses, thus they end up borrowing money from BTA's admin funds. 

Thus incurring substantial debts which has contributed to a major budget dificit we are facing right now. As for the projects, most if not all of their funding has been through gifts & donations from overseas Churches, especially USA. But due to financial/economic crissis they are experiencing, this source of funding has dropped significantly by some 90%. 

This has affected our work in a big way and we had to rely on whatever monies we could raise internally. One of the main income sources is through office space rentals here at BTA POM office. Tenants have not paid up on time and this has accrued to a substantial debt and the board and admin are taking steps to recoup those moneys, which would take some time. 

We have one property in Madang that needs a major maintenance to be done so that we can rent it out to bring in some income. But right now given our financial constrain, we are not able to do that. If you are in Madang and want to assist us, we would appreciate your help very much. 

Our national Church has not been supporting our work except for one or two Churches are now realizing the importance of the work of Bible Translation and giving towards specific language groups. 

For example, Cassowary Road United Church is the first Church in PNG to take ownership of the Bible Translation work and is supporting three language groups in Morobe with at least K1500 per quarter which is a good start. 

If we have say 10 Churches in PNG giving a minimum of K1500 per quaterly or monthly, it will be a big help to enable us to fully support our language projects and speed up the work of getting their Bible Translations completed within less time. As you all know, BTA and TSCF has a very close relationship over the years and BTA has helped and continues to help TSCF in many ways. 

We are now in need and I am appealing to you all to pray with us and if God compels you to help in anyway, we would appreciate it. 

You could get your Church to consider supporting our work and if that is an option, let me know and I will direct you to our Church Engagement team to get in touch with you. Steven Thomas is in charge of our Church Engagment team.

God bless you all and thank you for your attention and time.

Andrew Kwimberi

BTA Board Chair.

The Pay It Forward Movement

Ralph Waldo Emerson, an American essayist and poet, said in his 1841 essay “Compensation” that: "in the order of nature we cannot render benefits to those from whom we receive them, or only seldom. But the benefit we receive must be rendered again, line for line, deed for deed, cent for cent, to somebody."

In a Papua New Guinean society saturated with disenfranchisement and disillusionment, it would be difficult to imagine many willing to do as Emerson suggested. That is to lend a helping hand willingly and without hope for compensation.

And in a society where cynicism and negativity abound, it would be even harder to imagine people helping others as payment for help they themselves received.

Unfortunately, many in this country find themselves unwittingly stuck in a society where the negativities far outweigh the positives. The sort of positives they can rest upon when they desire inspiration from their society. The sort of inspiration that gives them hope and promise.

But rather than dwell in society’s muck and mire, do we ask ourselves often enough whether we are capable of instilling change? A change to the situation we find ourselves in? And that under which others do as well?

The late Mother Teresa once said: “never worry about numbers.  Help one person at a time, and always start with the person nearest you.”

Indeed the ability to change our station and situation in life may rest with how we help ourselves by helping others.

The Movement

Whilst the idea of helping someone as payment for kindness shown to you is not new, the “Pay It Forward” movement began to take form and shape in the year 2000 after a book by Catherine Ryan Hyde (titled Pay It Forward) was published and later turned into a movie of the same title.

So profound was the impact the book and movie had on many people that several “movements” espousing the ideals promoted by the concept began to sprout all over the world.

In the United States, the Karma Seed Foundation was created after the founder was reunited with a video camera he had previously lost. All through the kindness of a total stranger.

The Pay It Forward Movement and Foundation was “officially” founded in America and has been reported to have been the catalyst for millions of random acts of kindness throughout the world, some significant in nature, others not so.

These acts include a stranger helping to pay Aus $10,000 for a woman to have a liver operation she could otherwise have not afforded. And then there was the little boy who, when he saw that a parked car was about to be ticketed, asked his mum if he could top up the parking meter to stop the person getting booked. It saved someone a $79 fine.

And then there are those testimonies attesting to the value of paying it forward. Bree, a 20 year old Australian posted on a kindness website the following:

It is my wildest dream that the concept of paying a favor forward instead of paying it back would take over the world and results in a cascading flood of people helping their fellow human beings.

“This may never come true but I believe that if just one of the people I help does the same for another person then it has made a difference to the world.

“I do not have a lot of money, I am not extremely gifted or intelligent, I don’t know how to make things better for everyone but if I can help anyone in some small way, whether that be opening a door for a lady who has her hands full with shopping, directing a lost tourist, informing an elderly man as to when the next bus will arrive or even just saying “thank-you” and smiling at a sales assistant who appears to have had a bad day, I know that my small favors somehow, somewhere make a difference, and that’s enough for me. Don’t pay it back – pay it forward. The world won’t change, but you can.” 

There is also the testimony shared by a young mother from Manus Province living abroad who prefers to use the tag Shell Pipou Lowo on social network sites:

“I remember in Lae as a kid as part of our Hospitality classes we brought fruit to the children’s ward at Angau. Each child would be sent home with a note asking to bring money to take to the main market the next day.

“During our lesson the school bus would take us all down to the market as we walked in pairs to buy as much fruit to take back for our visit. We would then head back to school and cut the fruit up and then visit the hospital.

“It taught me from an early age to have compassion for others and not take things for granted. If only this was still practiced in schools today, our kids might learn a few things other than FB and video games.

“After moving to Port Moresby, I volunteered alongside people from the Red Cross and Rotary to read to kids in the children’s ward and cart around food and magazines. I used to read the books in English and then translate in tok pisin, which was always a good laugh. POMGen was also the first place I witness someone die in front of me during my rounds. Another harsh reality of PNG life.

“A little love goes a long way and to see a sick child smile for even a little bit is worth more than its weight in gold.”

International Pay It Forward Day

An International Pay It Forward Day was founded by Blake Beattie in 2011 and the first such day was declared for the last Thursday of each April. The aim of the day was to teach people the virtues and values of giving. Of giving without expecting returns or payment.

Beattie says of the Day that “there is tremendous power and positive energy in giving – it is a shame that not enough people have experienced it to the fullest. Pay It Forward Day is about all people, from all walks of life giving to someone else and making a positive difference. At last count there were more than 500, 000 people in 38 countries around the world participating on the day.

It is expected that the International Pay It Forward Day will be a significant feature on international calendars for many years to come as the message of sharing and caring is evangelized.

How Can You Pay It Forward?

The concept of paying it forward is encapsulated in four simple steps:

Be attentive wherever you are for opportunities to help someone. Perhaps you have an elderly or disabled neighbor who is too proud to ask for help with their yard work or maybe you're in a restaurant and see someone who looks like they could use some kind stranger to pay for their meal. You can change people's attitudes about the world through your unobtrusive acts of kindness.

Do something nice for someone you don't know (or don't know very well). It should be something significant, and not for a person from whom you expect a good deed -- or anything at all, for that matter -- in return.

Spread the word. If the person thanks you and wants to "repay" you (that is, pay it "back"), let them know that what you'd really like is for them to pay it "forward" -- you'd like them to do something nice for three people they don't know, and ask those three people to do something nice for three more people. The idea is to consciously increase the goodness of the world.

Pay it forward. When you notice that somebody has done something nice for you, make a note in your mind to practice three acts of kindness towards other people, as described in Step 3.

“Carry out a random act of kindness, with no expectation of reward, safe in the knowledge that one day someone might do the same for you”- Princess Diana, Princess of Wales.
Sources: Pay It Forward Foundation and www.payitforwardday.com

UPNG & The 2015 Pacific Games

Commentary by Bosley Dingua 

It was a sunny midday sun after yesterday. After attending the church service at Koki Good Shepard Lutheran Congregation, I went to my office at the Waigani Main Campus, University of Papua New Guinea. 

UPNG employee and social commentator
Bosley Dingua
I left my Bible and the Lotu Book at the office, got my camera and walked out of my office. I decided to tour the campus to see if there is any work or progress being done to prepare the place and the fields for the 2015 Pacific Games.

I checked my watch for the time, and it was 12 pm sharp. I walked from my office down to the soccer fields near the Toa 6 boys residential area. The field was naked brown, except for the 4 goal posts that indicate that there are two soccer fields in place. 

There are tall grass blowing and whistling, producing musical tunes like sounds from the piano. I looked, and noticed that the ground was dry, and there are cracks due to the prolonged dry spell experienced here in Port Moresby. 

From there, I walked passed the rugby field as well, and observed the same things as in the soccer fields. There are no signs of improvement or upgrading being made to the fields in that part of the university. I continued on, between the Ulli Beier and the Open College Office, past the UPNG clinic and followed the track between Veari village and Toa 1, 2 and 3. 

I stood a few distance away and looked towards Lasitewa and Poroman Halls of Residence,where it houses the male second and third year students respectively. The burnt down Lasitewa Hall can be seen without any work done to renovate it as seen in the photograph. It was left alone just like that after the fire burn it down. 

I proceeded on, down towards the north east end of the campus, where the proposed games village will be built. I walked on, thinking that there are some ground work being done on that part. 

I continued, and noticed that nothing was done. The vegetation that was there were left intact, except for the tracks created by the Uniforce security when patrolling the area. 

From there, I walked back up, towards the Security base, and then towards my office. I observed that nothing has been done on the ground to show that Port Moresby and PNG is ready for the big sporting event.
Burnt remains of Lasitewa Male Students' Dormitory

The University of Papua New Guinea is allocated every year by the government in its budget about 40 million Kina to run its affairs. That money is not enough to improve and provide more and better accommodations for its ever increasing number of students every year. 

This is due to the fact that almost 3/4 of that money is taken up by recurrent expenditure, and it is left with almost nothing to improve its services, recruit new and qualified lecturers, and renovate and re - stock the Sir Michael Somare Library as well as other lecture and tutorial rooms.

The University really need this project to help in terms of providing better accommodation to its ever increasing number of student intakes every year after the Pacific Games and beyond. 

If I can remember correctly, and I stand to be corrected, the national government, under the Somare regime allocated about 500 million Kina to the PNG sports foundation to begin work on the renovation of the stadium, the training facilities and building of accommodation for the athletes at the University, since it will be the games village. Since then, nothing has eventuated up till now. 

It is 2 years now, and we have 2 more years before the games begin. Considering the example as seen in the PNG Games in Kokopo due to late preparedness, we have problems faced by the teams, as reported by the National Newspaper Today in its column section. 

This project needs honesty, accountability and trust from the National Government, the PNG Sports Foundation, the University Administration, and the contractors to make it happen for the benefit of the countries participating, and for the new students, who will be our relatives or family members coming in to UPNG for studies beginning 2015 and beyond, as accommodation here at UPNG will be scarce if nothing is done. 

I hope this project gets going beginning next year.

Racism & Gay Rights in a "Forum of Liars"

Abu Nawas from the Whispering Gallery

Oh boy, I think my neighbour needs help. I think he has gone bananas, and I am extremely worried about him. Yesterday I overheard him tell a young University of PNG law student on social media, that he was a Rugby Union Coach that wears a beard like Osama Bin Laden, burly and built like Arnold Swazernegger, looks like Brad Piitt, talks like Morgan Freeman, thinks like Albert Einstein and runs like Sonny Bill Williams with a rugby ball.That guy needs help, seriously.
Prominent rugby coach and social commentator
Frank A Makanuey

He needs to be taken to Laloki Hospital, where he should be admitted for some serious checkup. They need to put his head under a Scanner and scan his head for some crossed wires, or some ruptured veins that burst the bubble and his mental real estate is having a melt down. I think they need to give him some very strong drugs so he can start to think clearly again. I think he suffers multiple personality disorder of some sort or something of that nature anyway.

Last week he was telling me that some Government Minister told him to"be very careful". Be very careful about what. I dont even know if he knows any Government Ministers. I have not seen him anywhere near the Parliament House. He did not make any sense to me and he sounded really mental. Early this week he told me that the Governor of NCD told had chastised him for for dwelling to much in the "forum of liars" . What the hell is a forum of liars, when all he has been doing is just making Sharp Talk.

This morning, I saw him out of his house wearing a bright blue long sleeved shirt. I asked whats with the blue shirt. He said he was promoting a "racism free day". I looked at him long and hard, my mouth open, my jaw jammed, and my tongue came out wagging like a horny dogs on a heat, trying to form the next line out of my mouth...."what the hell are talking about. What is a racism free day?"...but I just stop short, frozen like an iceberg, just before I could produce any vocals to say something....I instantly recall, that my favourite neigbour is probably has gone bananas, you know like mental.

He must have noticed my worried and confused look, so in a clarified, pure as water silky voice he said. There is a lot of Sharp Talk coming from the Governor of Oro, that he has been accused of being a racist. Remnants of the colonial era did not like the way Governor of Oro's constant reference of the "colonial era" people and they have retalliated by branding him a racist, and even called him the "Pauline Hanson" of PNG. Pauline Hanson of PNG, thats a bit stiff, dont you think, well I think so.

Racism is the scourge of society. Racism in the not too distant past has resulted in killings, mass killings, torture, and genocide. Racism is therefore not very nice. For it rear its ugly head in the midst of the slow, time is of no consequence, Melanesian society, like ours is tragic.

I grew up in an era where I face some aspects of the racism during the 70's. You know I remember being arrested by four burly and tall white Australian Policemen driving around in a Holden Kingswood, just because I was taking a short from the Bisini Soccer grounds, through the AFL grounds, to Angau Drive, trying to get to the POM Gen so I could catch the BTT PMV to Hohola.

If you dont know what BTT PMV stands for, it means, Buang Taxi Truck PMV. In those it was the Buang people from Morobe Province, majority of them work as houseboi's for the whiteman, and they collected their wages and bought Isuzu Trucks and converted them into PMV's.

Angau Drive was a white only area, and if any natives were seen around there, they were arrested and escorted out of the area. Well I was arrested, not charged, but sworn at, ridiculed, and escorted out of the area. I was told that if they caught me ever again, I was going straight to boystown in Wewak.

I did not like the way I was treated by the four burly Australian policemen, and I vowed to resent any person advocating racism, more so in my old age. I suddenly looked at my neighbour and said I like the idea. Lets promote a "Racism Free Day". There is no such thing in the world today. So lets start it. You know, there is fathers day, mothers day, Worlds Aids day, and all kinds days, so lets start one. A "Racism Free Day".

It seems racism still exist, despite worldwide condemnation of it. Its been practise on English Soccer Fields, by Australian Cricketers, and in the cricket games played in India. Its been in Australian Political scene with Pauline Hanson. With Paulline Hanson, you should know it, just don't ask me to "pleae explain". I don't have the time.

So racism, I speak of is the problem between white people and black people. White people think they are superior and black people are not. Lo and behold a Papuan New Guinean has been branded as a racist. But there is all kinds of racism and all forms of it. Racism does exist between black people themselves, especially in PNG. Its called regionalism. Racism exist between sexes, sexual preferences, such as gay/lesbian people and straight people.

Okay thats another subject which I dont have to the time to think about, but I am sure if my neighbour thinks that he has a beard like Osama Bin Laden, Built like Arnold Swazernneger, speaks like Morgan Freeman, looks like Brad Pitt, thinks like Albert Einstein, and runs like Sonny Bill Williams with a rugby ball, then I will be a monkeys uncle, and all the gay lesbian people should have their heads examined and institutionalised for having mental problems.

Too much bullshit, in a forum of liars, I am the best mauswara ther is available straight from the Hohola Lareva Market institution....... Peace.

Juffa Imposes Strict Guidelines

ORO Governor Garry Juffa is imposing strict guidelines for foreign owned and run businesses in the province.
When the guidelines come into effect, no businesses will be allowed to operate in Oro province without the approval of the Provincial Executive Council.

Oro Governor, Gary Juffa
“No business will be allowed to operate in Oro Province without the consent of the Oro Provincial Cabinet,” Governor Juffa said.

Mr Juffa had declared that Oro will only accommodate legitimate businesses who had ensured that they were complying with Employment and Migration laws of the country before they were given the green light to operate in Oro Province.

“I do not care what permits or licenses Waigani dishes out. If the company is not compliant with Labor and Employment laws, if they are in breach of Migration and Customs Laws, if they are not registered for Taxation purposes and they are not paying any form of tax, they will not be allowed to do business in Oro Province. It is as simple as that,” he said.

“I will not allow my province to be a haven for those who flaunt the laws of PNG. All investors and businesses in Oro will have to be approved by the PEC and my office. Otherwise, they are not welcome.

“This includes fishing companies, logging companies and exploration and mining companies. Either you get our authorisation or you don’t enter Oro Province. For too long Waigani bureaucrats have negligently issued all types of licenses and permits without checking if the companies are actually compliant.

“No longer is this the case in Oro. You can do business in NCD or Waigani or elsewhere but if you are disrespectful of our laws and our people, you are not welcome in Oro. We welcome genuine investors, people who care and respect us, who pay their taxes and who abide by the laws of the land,” he said. 

Governor Juffa said Oro Province would be establishing an inspectorate to review all businesses in Oro and determine whether companies are abiding by the laws. 

“If they are not they would be asked to rectify their status or leave,” he said.

He also struck back at the Chinese Embassy and the China PNG Friendship Association for complaining about raids conducted by Customs and Police and said the companies complaining had a lot to answer for, such as illegal logging and firearms and illegal presence of expatriates who could not even speak English.

“In China we would respect the laws. In PNG, we expect the same courtesy. The company can lodge their complaints with my office and provide evidence. They can also explain their illegal activities in Oro and explain the firearms and illegal logging and breach of Migration and Labour laws,” Mr Juffa said.

“I would also like the Labour Department to explain what they are doing in Oro since there are many foreigners working here illegally. The message is very simple - you comply or you get out,” he said.
PC Online

The Boss and Master mentality must Be Eradicated!

Commentary by Nathan Dingu

While there are many Papua New Guineans rising right to the top of the corporate ladder in many institutions in PNG, I believe we are still more or less spectators especially in decision making in Papua New Guinea!

First and foremost, while privatization has been seen as the ‘way’ forward – how many of the ‘privatized’ firms will see a Papua New Guinean as the top manager i.e. Chief Executive Officer within the next five years.

Social Network Commentator, Nathan Dingu
We have many industries today in PNG and top firms in almost all sectors including mining, oil and gas, banking etc – how many of these have a training program that has an emphasis on training Papua New Guineans to lead these industries in this new millennium?

Indeed, we certainly do need certain expertise where Papua New Guineans cannot do certain themselves. However do we need it all of the time? Certainly not and I believe you will agree with me especially when there are so many students of so many schools attaining the highest level including Doctorates, Masters, and also Bachelors in our very own institutions in our own country.

Why then do we have so many foreign expatriates in our country at the top of the corporate world in Papua New Guinea?

There may be other reasons, but I believe we have been conditioned in a way that we ‘think’ that we require a certain expertise because ‘they’ do it so much better than us right? Right throughout our country whether it is intentional or unintentional, we conform to the idea that we do need a certain level of ‘foreign boss’ to dictate to us what is required of us to do because that is what we are used too.

And this has been happening since independence right to this very day and age we are living in. In almost every corporation – foreign ‘expertise’ are being brought in to run our institutions, run our corporations and run this country but the real question that we have to ask ourselves is the million dollar question: “Do we still need them?”

It is a proven fact that any one regardless of creed or color and any company or organization can be successful if they set their mind to it. Yes any corporation can succeed if they employ certain techniques that works, give their time, dedication, a proactive outlook and efficiency in producing quality results that require less action (thus less costs).

Why then do we still have ‘certain’ experts who are coming into this country by the hoards to become our managers, tell us what to do, and in most cases – after we teach them what to do?
Yes – it is a known fact that we have truck drivers, men who have been made redundant in their own countries, bar tenders who have little or no qualification in many of our institutions working over college degree workers etc.

Can Papua New Guineans rise up and take the challenge when required? Look around you – how many self made millionaires are there in Papua New Guinea? I’m sure you know some and I certainly do too. Why then do we need foreigners to run our corporations when it is ten times cheaper to employ a Papua New Guinean who can work ten times as hard too?

While many of us wish to ‘get on with our lives,’ ‘look after our children,’ and ‘have a beer’ – these are questions that we must ask ourselves one time or another!

Certainly – our forefathers (some of whom are still with us) have certainly brought this nation thus far. From political independence to economic independence but how about this new generation – have we come out of the colonial era ‘boss and master’ mentality

Or for that matter – do you want to rise to the pinnacle of the organization you are working in – Would you see yourself as the CEO of your organization or a top line manager in 5 to 10 years time?

It is time a new generation rises in Papua New Guinea – a generation that can stand up to any foreigner whether he/she be black, white, brown or blue. A generation that who can stand up and argue our case because we have the expertise to do it as well!

We must realize that it has been more than 40 years since the seal of self governance – we must see ourselves at the very same level as foreigners. We can call this country an independent nation but until we as Papua New Guineans can ‘live and play’ on the same playing field – we have still not come out of the “Boss and Yes Master” mentality.

You might be wondering why I have not mentioned the government – well isn’t it time we stop blaming our government for everything? We should take it upon ourselves to know our own laws – know ourselves and be able to step –up in any situation that comes to us with or without government support.

Once again – we as a new generation must rise up – we must rise up in every sector, whether it is private or public. We must realize that for every generation there is always a legacy. Our future generations will give us a name by what we accomplish

Our parents generation including that of the GC and Sir J have given us independence…what now are we going to accomplish?

Monday, 26 November 2012

CUMA PNG & the Ricochet Café

When Walter Elliott said “perseverance is not a long race; it is many short races one after another”, he probably did not have in mind determined people like Lydia and Peter Kailap.
The indomitable Lydia and Peter Kailap

But his quote has been used by countless many others throughout history in contexts not necessarily related to his reflections on the “doctrine and practice of Christian perfection”.

And persevere is what this effervescent but unassuming couple have done in their quest to help the youth of the Kaugere suburb where they reside. This they do through the Children’s University of Music & Arts (CUMA) PNG and the growing Ricochet Cafe.  

The Kailaps describe CUMA on their Facebook page as “more than just a school”.

“We have a Youth Development Program called "Fox Tribe”; which was set up by our street boys who also built the school and help to run it.

Some CUMA Youth on Kaugere Hill
“We are about empowering poverty stricken communities in PNG and assisting them to make a better life for themselves and especially their children”.

“The aim of the CUMA is to see a gradual change in “Kaugere from a notorious, violent and dysfunctional place into a peaceful community that values its members; especially the children”.

But as is common with many such community initiatives, government support seems a foreign concept.

“We are not funded by Government or Aid Agencies; we operate on the sale of Greeting Cards featuring Peter's art and on donations (mainly from the business community of Port Moresby.

“The Australian High Commission raised funds for CUMA in 2009 through their ‘High Commissioners Charity Ball’. That built classrooms and allowed us to set up a Commercial Kitchen which is being developed into a Catering Facility to create income for CUMA’s self-sufficiency”, the Kailaps continue.

Ricochet Cafe's Koki setup
Ricochet Cafe was borne from this desire to be self-sustaining, initially opening within Port Moresby’s Koki Market. It also engaged young people and gave them the chance to earn an honest keep, however infrequent that may have been. But they still persevered.

A humble setup, the original Ricochet Cafe presented as an open air plan, offering some of the city’s most delectable burgers and fries. The menu would have easily put to shame some of the more established eateries which the upwardly mobile frequent.

Family Violence Community Recovery Workshop
But anyone who has been to Koki Market would appreciate how difficult a task the Kailaps and their enthusiastic band of youths would have faced in driving the project forward from that location.

And as difficult as the initial stages of Ricochet’s establishment may have been, the humble beginnings have now paved the way for a move to the Gordons Industrial area.

There is much work to be done to convert the building they have moved to into an environment suitable enough to prepare and cater food and beverages to the public, but the Kailaps, particularly the steely Mrs Kailap is quietly confident that this will eventuate as renovation and maintenance work is starting soon.
A CUMA student admiring paintings

Whilst the Ricochet Cafe is not yet up and running as a full-on cafe per se, lunch orders are being prepared and dispensed to several companies and organizations within the Gordons area.

The Kailaps and their group of eager young people are hopeful that works can be complete in time for an official opening in early 2013.

The intention to expand this benevolent concept and the desire to see it succeed is evident in the conviction with which Mrs Kailap speaks of their project.

The CUMA PNG Facebook page states further that the “Kaugere is the pilot project and we plan to extend our work to other parts of PNG in the near future; starting with Maipenairu Village in the Gulf Province”.

Requests for lunch orders and menus can be placed through the CUMA Facebook page or by calling to mobile number +675 7022 3277.
Pictures courtesy of CUMA PNG Facebook page