Friday, July 17, 2009

Death by 1001 cuts


Papua News Guinea won the Prince Albert Foundation/UNCA global prize for news coverage of climate change, bronze award.
The United Nations Correspondents Association (UNCA) was founded in 1948 when the UN began to meet regularly in New York.
Its over 200 members come from more than 50 countries and the purpose of the awards is to recognise and encourage excellence in reporting on the UN’s worldwide activities.
The award was presented by UN secretary-general Ban Ki-Moon, in at a New York ceremony.
The awards were open to journalists anywhere in the world for their work in print, Internet, radio or TV.
Coverage of PNG's carbon and enviro woes led to also winning the 2009 Asia-Pacific award for environmental journalism.


But Due to unpopular demand this is the last post. Sadly Papua News Guinea is to die a very premature death due to AAP concerns the 30 per day who daily read it are undermining the nature of their news service. That and they may be liable for some law suit due to the author's unchecked behaviour. It was but brief. Adieu all ye PNG fateful.

More Footy Violence in PNG

Another killing in post State of Origin fighting in Port Moresby.

Cockfighting Carbon Trading Australian Horse Trainer in PNG

By Ilya Gridneff

PORT MORESBY, July 16 AAP - A former Australian horse trainer who ran a Philippines cock fighting business is involved in carbon deals central to an inquiry into Papua New Guinea's suspended climate change boss.

Kirk William Roberts denies any wrongdoing in his carbon dealings in PNG and claims former business associates are running a smear campaign against him.

"I am a loveable larrikin," Roberts said from his Port Moresby home.

"I've done nothing wrong, we're doing good things.

"I am the most beneficial foreigner to this country (PNG) right now."

But Roberts' role in a series of carbon deals is now at the crux of PNG's carbon trading woes that includes an investigation in Dr Theo Yasause's role as director of the country's Office of Climate Change (OCC).

Yasause gave Hong Kong based company Forest Top and Roberts, a director of another company called Nupan PNG, an official mandate to trade carbon after Roberts locked in local landowners for potential carbon deals.

But documents show Yasause issued the mandate when he was the PNG prime minister's chief of staff, signing documents as interim director of OCC on May 12, 2008, one month before he was officially appointed director.

The documents show Yasause allowed Roberts to go to the world market offering lucrative carbon credits in PNG.

On the same day Roberts and Yasause also signed a memorandum of understanding with Forest Top director David Leamey to facilitate international carbon credit deals.

Forest Top then gave Australian company Carbon Planet the exclusive rights to broker the credits and provide technical and scientific input to verify the credits.

Forest Top was to be the body that distributed carbon credit sale proceeds to the stakeholders like Nupan, Carbon Planet and landowners.

An Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) document shows Carbon Planet last year gave $1.2 million for projects in PNG which were associated with Nupan and Forest Top.

Carbon Planet literature predicts the global voluntary carbon market will be worth around $US9.9 billion-$US17.1 billion ($A12.5 billion-$A21.5 billion) per year by 2012, with the global compliance market worth up to $US2 trillion ($A2.5 trillion) by 2020.

Carbon Planet chairman Jim Johnson said they still stood by their PNG deals but declined to comment further.

The deal between Yasause and Roberts' company Nupan became public last month, and as PNG does not have any carbon policy nor legislation for such ventures, the PNG government sidelined Yasause and launched a full investigation into the OCC.

The prime minister's media secretary Betha Somare said any of the deals struck were not valid. The new acting director of the OCC, Wari Iamo, is expected to make a similar statement this month.

"As Nupan (PNG) Trading Corporation is the power-of-attorney for numerous incorporate land groups, it is inappropriate for us to comment on any media speculation at this time," Roberts said.

Nupan and Forest Top are now in dispute and Leamey and Roberts are locked in various legal battles over wide ranging allegations centred in the Philippines, where Roberts is under investigation by the Philippine immigration department.

"I want nothing to do with carbon credits and nothing to do with Kirk William Roberts," Leamey said.

Roberts, equally as frosty in his opinions of Leamey, was involved in what is considered the Philippines' national sport of cock fighting, running an operation in Olongapo, 130km northwest of the capital Manila.

"Cock fighting in the Philippines is the equivalent to pokies in Australia," he said.

Roberts said jealous cock fighting rivals, former business partners and competitors were running a smear campaign against his efforts to help PNG.

That smear campaign includes details of his time as a thoroughbred trainer in NSW, when his horse Yobro won the 1997 Auckland Cup and came second in the Brisbane Cup the following year.

But in March 2002 NSW Thoroughbred Racing Board stewards charged Roberts for verbally threatening his vet, Dr Darren Gibbins, during a December 2001 telephone call.

Roberts was given a six months disqualification after being found guilty of asking his vet to withhold records from an inquiry.

Previously Roberts had a six-month ban for administering a prohibited substance to a racehorse.An ASIC prosecution report for July to September 2007 shows Roberts also was fined $2,800 under the Corporations Act for failing to assist liquidators and failure to provide reports to the liquidator.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Death by 1000 Cuts - Logging by stealth in PNG

While everyone focuses on illegal logging and logging practice - PNG's woes are much more obvious when you see the millions of hectares of land given over for 'Forest Conversion' projects like Oil Palm. Sadly many operators are using forest conversion as a back door to log by stealth.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

PNG creates two new provinces

PNG's will soon get two new Highlands Provinces - Hela and Jiwaka. See the story below.

Digger's remains found in PNG

Three skeletons suspected to be those of Australian diggers have been uncovered near Rabaul in Papua New Guinea. In World War II Australia first clashed with Japanese troops when they invaded Rabaul on January 23, 1942. The 1400 Australian troops known as Lark Force were outnumbered and forced to evacuate Rabaul. More below.,27574,25785149-23109,00.html

Carbon Cheating

I've come a bit late to this one but it's good satire on the whole carbon credit saga. Worth a look. And it's a great opening act to a story in the pipeline due out today that includes - one horse trainer, Philippine cock fighting, a transvestite and carbon trading in PNG.

I kid you not.

Monday, July 13, 2009

Trobriand Islands Yam Festival

Just back from a weekend in PNG's Islands of Love - the Trobriand Islands. So bad are the crops that the traditional yam festival (Minimala) has not been held for the last 20 years because harvest sizes are not good enough to literarily sing or dance about.
Above is a picture of one village filling their chief's Yam House with you guessed it -yams. In the past tonnes of Yams were distributed out through the chief's and their yam houses but due to population explosion from too much, ahem, love - harvest is down .
Trobriand Islander Serah Clark now organises a smaller Ugwabwena Yam festival on Kiriwina in an attempt to revive the islands' dying traditions.
The Ugwabwena Festival last weekend drew 50 tourists from around the world to see famous local dances, singing and art and crafts. More pictures and stories to come.

some pictures

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Journalists and Other Waiters

Even the highest outpost of Journalism gets caught in the crossfire as contemporary modes slide farther into mere service delivery. Above is a copy of a letter I received from PNG's Department of Labour and Industrial Relations in regard to my short term employment in PNG.
Myself and my company AAP, yumi tokaut olsem mi laik wok insait lo PNG.
We asked for a three year work permit and we got a three month work permit.
When you look at the form and see what service industry servants are also signed under the 'Designation' of Jouranalist, albeit better paid and more appreciated, you realise the much maligned PNG public service has a wiked sense of humour.

Musingku conman offers duped investors 'Jesus money'

Long before naughty Bernard Madoff got in on the scene with billion dollar pyramid schemes Bougainville's self appointed royality Noah Musingku was ripping off people in the Pacific.
Many still hope he will live up to some of his far fetched promises - the latest is a new currency that proudly sports a picture of him and the other big guy - Jesus Christ.
Pictured above is Musingku and from earlier this year when giving newly appointed Bougainville President James Tanis, following behind, a guard of honour.
Just in case people forgot Musingku was also known as: 'His Majesty King David Peii II, Head of State of the Twin Kingdom of Papaa'la and Me'ekamui' he wore a crown with KING written on it.
Only in PNG would a wanted conman be able to give a newly appointed leader such treatment and vice versa could one be able to pull it off.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Foreign Climate Change Funding Goes Where?

A while back I posted ten questions sent to Australia's Climate Change Minister Penny Wong's office which unsurprisingly did not get a response.
The federal opposition, through the shadow climate change minister Greg Hunt, now urges the government to answer those questions and please explain where all the money goes to foreign initiatives with countries like PNG on climate change...

"Can they (Rudd government) point to a single tree being saved?" Mr Hunt asked.

Monday, July 6, 2009

Women in PNG parliament

PNG Parliament to vote on a special provision under the constitution to get three women into the House. It's already failed once but the PM Michael Somare is urging his government to get behind it despite reservations from all sections of society.

PNG Headhunter in Hollywood

Look out Hollywood bad guys - Papua New Guinea's Stanley "Headhunter" Nandex looks to be headed for Tinseltown.
The 37-year-old Nandex, a seven-time World Kickboxing Champion, retired this year at the top of his sport.
But that hasn't slowed the mean machine whose round house kicks have sent more than a few opponents into intensive care.
Now Nandex is pursuing a role in a Hollywood big screen action blockbuster.
"Chuck Norris has been one of my heroes, Jean-Claude Van Damme, Bruce Lee, too," he said.
"I followed them as a martial arts student from when I started at 13. I went to Lee's grave in Hong Kong and met Chuck in Florida in USA. I also met Van Damme.
"It will be good for PNG to one day produce another Chuck Norris."
Nandex said a project set in both Los Angeles and PNG was being planned.
"They're looking for the finance and once everything is in order, we're thinking next year," he said.
"Certainly it will be a dream come true to work in Hollywood, to take part in a martial arts movie series with Don Wilson. The producer is working on the script now."
Kickboxing in PNG started in 1996, when Nandex crossed over from martial arts. Today, there are about 2,500 registered kickboxers across the country.
His career of 48 fights includes 41 wins with 30 knockouts and seven losses.
He has received the industry's 'knockout of the year' award four times, been honoured with an MBE (Member of the British Empire) and has twice been named PNG's Sportsman of the Year.
His career has taken him around the world and he has a massive fan base in PNG.
But success for Nandex means giving something back to his country.
He has no interest in politics, preferring to focus on training young fighters, working as a motivational speaker and even visiting Port Moresby's Bomana jail.
"Winning a few title belts is something, but changing someone's life for the positive - that would be the biggest achievement and that's what I want to do for my country," he said.
"I see in the sport a lot of potential, these kids are off the street, keep them busy and learn something positive for their future.
"Kickboxing gives them a direction, it's also about changing routine about finding their potential."
watch here some of the Headhunter's KOs

Friday, July 3, 2009

Lark Force Pilgrimage

Pete McGuiness with Bainings kids.

Lark Force trek departure photo.

A while back I carried out a three day trek through East New Britain with South Sea Horizons and met some interesting characters along the way. Here is a story about one man's journey to retrace his father's steps when part of the disastrous Rabaul defence during World War II.

and here is a longer version:

REDD Monitor

For all those who can’t get enough information on the exciting developments on Reduced Emissions from Deforestation and Degradation (REDD) - check out
It's a valuable source of climate change and forestry news all into one neat little package.
This week they gave the Economist and AAP PNG a pat on the back for their tireless carbon eco-warrior like journalism…So we like them extra more!

Thursday, July 2, 2009

RH Knighthood Outrage

Environment groups are outraged billionaire Malaysian owner of Rimbunan Hijau (RH) logging company, Tiong Hiew King, has been awarded a knighthood for work in Papua New Guinea.
The Swiss organisation Bruno Manser Fund dubbed Tiong 'Knight of the Chainsaw'.

Family Mistaken for Car Thieves

Driving home along up Lawes Road and here is a slice of famous Port Moreby - several shots fired and some locals now lying on the ground. Such is life in Paradise. After a few more questions the story emerges that perhaps here lies innocent men. Over zealous security may have mistaken them for car thieves....again, such is life in Paradise....

Park versus Supermarket PNG style

PNG's PM Michael Somare and his Deputy Puka Temu, the Lands Minister are in dispute over a park opposite one of Port Moresby's major supermarket's Boroko Foodworld. Locals who remember say the same zoning issues lapsed when Foodworld was built. So why is the PM so committed to saving some slides for PNG kiddies?

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

This is not a Climate Change pipe

PNG's Office of Climate Change director Dr Theo has been suspended so an investigation into the office can be conducted...

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Stinky End Thwarted

In a past life in London I worked for some of the world's best/worst tabloids. But moving to the AAP foreign correspondent role in PNG does not necessarily mean serious journalism.
In fact it is very apparent the Australian media obsession with PNG is not serious at all. It's all a little too complicated and different so what they want, or the media wants, is a healthy dose of witches, raskols, 'ooga booga' weird that keeps every one at a safe distance, happy in their prejudices. Oh don't forget a healthy dose of plane crashes and high alert for ex-pat rape and murder.
But having said all that- there is no doubt an endless supply of cracking PNG yarns that would make any hackneyed tabloid editor moist with excitment.

So here is some more from the classic PNG vault - I've already been complimented for managing to work sorcery into a toilet suicide bid...,25197,25712697-12335,00.html

by popular demand here are some others-

Wife killed after testicle-jibe,,24291896-1702,00.html

Women bash serial bottom pincher,23599,24222989-23109,00.html

And here is a friends favourite - picked up by reuters..

PNG Boxing Death

Questions have been raised over the handling of a boxing bout that resulted in the death of Papua New Guinean boxer making his professional debut.
Joel Hayeu, 23, from Manus Province in PNG's north, died in Port Moresby General Hospital on Sunday morning after sustaining head injuries during a six-round welterweight loss in a PNG Pro Boxing Federation bout on June 21.

In questions regarding AFP -AFP can't comment...

Journalists dealIing with government agencies and governments know the run-run-run-around you get. The specifics you ask and the bland empty rhetoric you receive.
But in the ever quixotic task of trying to get to the bottom of the Climate Change debacle, in particular to a host of multimillion dollar Australian-led initatives, I have tried on several fronts to find out what's going on.
The Australian government responses add to the Grahame Green story line made comical on a daily basis by the Office of Climate Change PNG.
Here are some questions posed to the Australian Federal Police - tied to past media articles - and see the response below...

Dear Sir,21985,25623185-661,00.html

To clarify - I am not making reference to PNG laws. (In PNG no laws have been broken as no laws exist). I did ask Penny wong's office about evolving climate change initiatives with AFP but got no response to that or the nine other questions.

I think its pretty clear what the questions are asking.

So hopefully that clarifies the issues you raise and I pose the original questions again-

Is the Australian Federal Police involved in monitoring carbon deals or will be involved in monitoring as part of transnational crimes?

Is there any "dialogue" between the AFP and say the Australian climate change office or the PNG climate change off or any other agencies on this issue?

A range of Australian companies are operating in PNG offering carbon trade deals or brokering - often facilitating some of these dubious deals that have been recently exposed by media - what responsibility does the Australian government or the AFP have in monitoring Australian companies in dubious carbon trade practice?


AFP response -

Hello Ilya

Thank you for the clarification and reference to the Herald Sun story.

Unfortunately the questions touch on policy matters that may or may not be referred to us from Ministerial level, or at such time as legislative initiatives come into being.

As such they are not questions that we can respond to at this stage and I would suggest that you keep trying Penny Wong's office.

I am sorry that we cannot be of more assistance in this instance.


Monday, June 29, 2009

Crime and Punishment in PNG

Port Moresby police have destroyed 5-mile settlement after three were killed in the area after the State-of-Origin rugby league clash last Wednesday night.
Chief Superintendent Fred Yakasa said hardline demolition and confiscation of beer from black-market shops was the only thing illegal settlers understood.
"My police will patrol these roads and they have been instructed to break legs and hands of people caught breaking that order.
"Enough is enough," he said.

PNG and China Strengthen Military Ties

China and PNG have committed to be better military friends - which no doubt has Aussie defence experts taking note.,21985,25705712-663,00.html

Sunday, June 28, 2009

Montevideo Maru

The sinking of the Montevideo Maru with the loss of 1,053 Australian prisoners of war and civilians on 1 July 1942 is Australia’s worst maritime tragedy. Sadly, it is also one of the lesser known.

This Wednesday 15 Australian families along with government officials will unveil a memorial in the Philippines to mark the 67th anniversary.

here are some previous AAP stories

Mark Day in the Australian newspaper:,25197,25659669-31477,00.html

Here is the John Huxley in Fairfax press:

For more information check Keith Jackson's PNG Attitude Blog..

Port Moresby Cultural Day

The Caritas Girls Technical School in Port Moresby held a cultural day on the weekend where students and families from the many and vaired districts in PNG's 19 provinces came together to celebrate their diversity under the banner of 'Our Culture Our Life'.

Friday, June 26, 2009

3 Dead in PNG State of Origin footy fights

Rugby League is PNG's national sport and no bigger event on the calender is the Australian State of Origin series. In the capital Port Moresby three were killed after drunken fights across the city.,25197,25693113-12335,00.html

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Unanswered Climate Change Questions

Australia has made all sorts of partnership agreements and multi-million dollar funding pledges to PNG surrounding Climate Change.
But when it comes to detail or even answering what the rhetoric means - don't expect an answer.
Here is a list of ten quesions I put to Australia's Climate Change minister Penny Wong - the predictable anodyne Australian Government response would be funny if it wasn't the bane of my existence.

1) Under the Papua New Guinea Australia Forest Carbon Partnership (PNGAFC) signed by PM Kevin Rudd and PNG PM Somare in March 2008 "Papua New Guinea and Australia will engage in a strategic policy dialogue on climate change" - can you explain what sort of "dialogue" has been occurring considering that the PNG government through their Office of Climate Change (OCC) has been offering carbon deals while no policy or legislation is in place - in particular with questionable REDD deals?

2) "Australia will work actively together to increase Papua New Guinea’s capacity in forest carbon monitoring and assessment" considering a raft of voluntary pilot schemes are already in full swing towards coming online - is this a signal that the Australian government has built enough "capacity in forest management" for these projects to be credible?

3) Is the Australian government concerned that there remains an apparent lack of monitoring, capacity and assessment in PNG's climate change institutions but pilot schemes are already being established ?

4) The PNGAFC says: "Building on Australia’s experience in national carbon accounting and measurement, Australia will provide scientific, technical and analytical support to inform Papua New Guinea’s development of its own national carbon accounting system " can you please explain where we are with that? or what technical et al support Australia is specifically providing?

5) "Australia’s $200 million International Forest Carbon Initiative is a key part of Australia’s international leadership on REDD. The Initiative supports international efforts on REDD through the UNFCCC. It is jointly administered by the Australian Department of Climate Change and AusAID.

"Australia has committed up to $3 million in initial funding which includes technical, scientific and analytical support for whole of government policy development and the design of Papua New Guinea's carbon monitoring and accounting systems" .

Can you tell me how much of the $200 million goes to PNG and how and when is the money is delivered, to what areas?

6) Is it a concern that millions of dollars in funding is going to PNG while serious issues of credibility, accountability, transparency and leadership remain?

(Dr Yasause OCC director is facing the sack after a series of leaked documents show significant "anomalies" - Dr Yasause refuted the leaked documents as merely “samples” stolen from his office drawer. When AAP asked why the head of one of PNG’s most lucrative resource industries would make “sample” documents, Dr Yasause said: "we want to see what it looked like".)

7) Who does Australia deal with in PNG's OCC - what specific individuals - as it appears there will be a regime change shortly and most PNG government officials are embarrassed by the OCC's current direction?

8) Would Australia's Climate Change Office support moves to get Australian Federal Police involved in monitoring carbon deals as part of transnational crimes? Is there any "dialogue" between the two agencies on this issue?

9) A range of Australian companies are operating in PNG offering carbon trade deals or brokering - often facilitating some of these dubious deals that have been recently exposed by media such as AAP- what responsibility does the Australian government or the Climate Change office have in monitoring Australian companies in dubious carbon trade practice?

10) How concerning is it that the director of the PNG office of climate change also wants to personally "produce and sell" carbon credits - essentially he becomes policy maker, legislator and trader- while the legality of this is questionable - does it jeopardises the integrity of the PNGAFC?

(This has been exposed in a signed letter to Jackson Yagi from Dr Yasuase dated September 20 2008 regarding the April Salome area East Sepik in relation to Australian company Earth Sky)

And here is the response from spokesperson for Minister for Climate Change and Water, Senator Wong:

Australia and PNG established the Forest Carbon Partnership to cooperate on Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Forest Degradation (REDD), and assist Papua New Guinea to participate in future international carbon markets.”

“Australia has committed up to $3 million in initial funding which includes technical, scientific and analytical support for whole of government policy development and the design of Papua New Guinea's carbon monitoring and accounting systems.”

“At the recent Australia – PNG Ministerial Forum (10 June), Australia and PNG signed a Work Plan under the PNG – Australia Forest Carbon Partnership. This recognises the key activities which need to occur for PNG to be able to participate in any international forest carbon market.”

I've followed up by asking why respond with answers that contained the same information as my questions. I tried to speak to the spokesperson because they have not addressed any of the questions but she has not responded to emails or calls. So there you go -

here are two stories I wrote this month about some of the problems in PNG:

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

PNG Road Trip

Plaque to Rupert Roelof Haviland on the way up to Goroka through the Eastern Highlands Province (EHP) along the Kassman Pass

Driving through the EHP on road to Goroka

Driving through the EHP
Henganofi District Office EHP

Leaving Markham Valley into Eastern Highlands
Markham Valley

Australia's classic Dunlop K26 sneakers are still hot property in PNG. Especially in Gusap in the Ramu Valley.

View from the drive into EHP - along the Kassman Pass.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Inquest into Kokoda Death

Close to 6000 Australians walk PNG's Kokoda Track every year as a pilgrimage to the World War II legacy but as the popularity increases so to have injuries and deaths. Since 2001 four Australians have died, two this year in the lead up to Anzac Day.

An inquest will be held into the death of 38-year-old mother of two. Doctors want to conduct research on the track so to work out how best combat health concerns.

What is behind the deaths and frequent hospitalisation of trekkers?

Here is a previous AAP story about insurance companies cutting costs on the Kokoda rescues and putting lives at risk according to some industry experts.,,25428585-401,00.html

Russian explorer Maclay and Papua New Guinea

Scroll down the bottom of this link to learn about the fascinating Russian explorer and scientist Micklouho-Maclay- who lived on and off in Madang for three years from 1871 to 1883. His New Guinea Diaries are a cracking read.

Masked PNG Minister Fears Swine Flu

PNG's Health Minister Sasa Zibe fears he has swine flu after visiting Brisbane for the PNG Australia minister's meeting June 10. The masked minister awaits lab test results to confirm or deny the dreaded A(H1N1).

Monday, June 22, 2009

Manam Island Girl Beheaded

A three year-old girl abducted and then beheaded in Madang. Tensions remain high between local Bogia people and thousands of Manam Islanders who settled there after a series of volcanic eruptions in 2004 and forced them to flee.,23739,25672099-5012766,00.html

Here is a bit of background behind the tensions by ABC PNG correspondent Liam Fox.

Saturday, June 20, 2009

Rift Oil

While everyone is talking about gas in PNG - others are talking oil. Rift Oil that is..

Friday, June 19, 2009

PNG Oink

PNG has a confirmed Swine Flu case - so after two months the germs have managed to migrate all the way from Mexico to Australia and now the Pacific's PNG. PNG is now part of the global pandemic.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Yes, no, I mean, er..goodbye...

Australian carbon company Carbon Planet paid $1.2 million to PNG for carbon deals but when AAP asked about it, Carbon Planet chairman Jim Johnson was not too pleased.
"I've got nothing to talk about," he said.
"I am really sick of you people casting aspersions on my company.
"No payment has been made to PNG, your information is incorrect."
AAP read out an Australian Securities and Investment Commission Carbon Planet financial statement which says: "Payments include $1.2 million of advanced funding on origination projects in PNG which the company expects to recoup in the 2009 financial year."

Johnson responded: "I am not explaining at all. I am not having this conversation," before hanging up.

PNG Border Action

The PNG police have arrested an Indonesian police officer for illegally crossing into PNG in West Sepik province. Recently I had my own brush with PNG border security but managed a better fate than this officer who tried ride across the border on a motorbike.

Waiting for Guffman, PNG style

Occasionally staying home on Saturday night, remaining sober and watching television has its benefits. One of those rare moments came last Saturday when I flicked from Iranian election riots on BBC, CNN and Sky news to then see what was offered on PNG’s EM TV (it's worth a look at EM TV's website).
It was a segment on this week’s Port Moresby Arts Theatre (MAT) production of” An Evening with Andrew Lloyd Webber.”
I only had time to grab my camera phone which nicely adds another layer of weirdness to the whole “spectacle”.
I’ve never seen any Andrew Lloyd Webber production and only one MAT production, so out of fairness I will not add any snide remarks, but there was something uniquely PNG about an expat in all seriousness describing the artistic merits and integrity of their amateur production while wearing what can only be described as several mops strung together.

The show opens tonight and runs till Saturday. All are encouraged to get along.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Mi amamas tru stap wantaim blog bilong yu

In strange social oscillations a social cousin from the social Sydney inner west has come into Port Moresby orbit.

And what's more George is working for Transparency International.

He nicely muses on his own nicely named blog. I nicely recommend a visit.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Headhunter Visits Bomana Jail

On Tuesday PNG sporting hero Stanley "Headhunter" Nandex delivered an inspiring talk to Bomana prisoners.
One of the country's highest profile athletes, Nandex is a now retired two-time world champion kick boxer who remained in PNG despite lucrative offers to train overseas.
Nandex urged inmates away from a life of crime.
"Jail is time for reflection, how you can make something away from crime," he said.
He said he had dallied with crime but instead chose kick boxing.
"When I won my first international title fight in Australia I dedicated the win to the prisoners of PNG," he said.

Bomana prisoner eats lunch

Prisoners from the seperate female wing of Bomana jail are allowed their children until early age

Nadex (right) told Bomana prisoners to stop taking drugs but posed for a photo with Jo whose T-shirt suggests another message.

View of Bomana grounds

Bomana Commander Michael Bine (above) told AAP: "The police cells are full and they bring them here.
"We've got no room, either. For every two that go, 20 come.
"The courts are taking too long to see those on remand. Some have been here more than four years waiting for trial."

On Tuesday PNG's only world champion sporting hero Stanley "Headhunter" Nandex visited Bomana jail, 30 minutes drive outside Port Moresby. The kick boxing champ urged prisoners to a life away from crime. But sadly for many, and those who spoke with AAP, conditions in jail are better than living in Port Moresby.
Correctional service commissioner Richard Sikani said it was worrying that life for some in Port Moresby was better in jail.
"A lot of people are saying that. They do crime because they want to go back to jail," he said.
"They get three meals a day, soap, toothbrush, towel, water, blanket, free everything."
Sikani said long remand periods were a well known issue in the law and justice sector.
"I find it hard I can't tell the courts to hurry up. We've spoken to police, the judges. I can't be like a hotel, saying we are full.
"We've raised this so many times. It's one of reasons behind the escapes because they don't feel justice is being done.
Read the full story at the bottom of this page: