Tuesday, May 05, 2015

Post PNG pays first dividend in 26 years

Prime Minister Peter O'Neill  has called for Post PNG to continue to do their best to ensure Papua New Guineans in remote locations continue to have ongoing access to quality postal services.
Speaking to workers and management at the Konedobu Post PNG facility yesterday, the Prime Minister officially launched three new Post PNG products and witnessed the first dividend cheque being paid by Post PNG in more than 26 years.
PM O'Neill said postal services around the world are facing pressure as people turn to the Internet for sending correspondence, however, in Papua New Guinea the traditional letters and parcel service remains of vital importance and must be maintained.
"As people now tend to send their mail through email and online services, the first business to suffer is the postal services," the Prime Minister said.
"We all know the challenges that Post PNG has been going through, both in terms of restructuring itself, and trying to establish its business under these challenging circumstances.  It has not been easy.
"As government, we have support PNG Post adapting into this new business environment.
"This is why we placed additional capital into PNG Post, and as a result, can see that postal services and related businesses are starting to deliver better outcomes.
"It is pleasing to note that Post PNG is turning the corner and improving the quality of services that it provides to the people of Papua New Guinea."
The Prime Minister further asked Post PNG employees present at the ceremony to continue to work together in strengthening the level of service they provide to the people.
"We are very proud of what you do. 
"I know it is not easy being in a business that is facing such challenges, but thanks to your efforts, all of you working together as a team, you are delivering new results for PNG Post."
While at the Konedobu compound, the Prime Minister launched the business E-Commerce project, the 2014 Annual Stamp Album, opened an airfreighted bonded warehouse for storage of goods, and witnessed the presentation of the K300,000 dividend payment to the Independent Public Business Corporation (IPBC).

Sunday, May 03, 2015

PM O’Neill highlights the success of PNG LNG on anniversary

Prime Minister Peter O'Neill  has expressed his satisfaction at the ongoing success of the PNG LNG project on the anniversary of the beginning of LNG production in Papua New Guinea one year ago last week.
He said the PNG LNG project is testament to the strong working relationships between key stakeholders that saw the project delivered on budget and ahead of time.
"The PNG LNG Project has faced many challenges since its inception, but through determination and partnership the construction phase was completed and production began one year ago," O'Neill said.
"We congratulate our partners, particularly ExxonMobil PNG Limited, for their tireless support for this project, and landowners in affected areas for actively engaging in this process and reaching agreement.
"The production of LNG in Papua New Guinea is one of the most important developments in our history and the benefits will be felt for decades.
"During the production phase more than 10,000 Papua New Guineans were employed and they expanded their own skills and capacity.
"This project is also an example of the investment and business opportunity in Papua New Guinea today.
"A number of other substantial projects are being developed around the nation, and as I stated yesterday during my visit to the Antelope Wellhead 5, we offer the same commitment and better as we engage with our stakeholders."
The Prime Minister said that the first full year of production was an important milestone in the ongoing development of the nation.
"2015 is a defining year for Papua New Guinea as our country moves on from the problems of the past to a future that is bright.
"In our 40th year of independence we are seeing change and improvement in the delivery of services for our people.
"We are building new classrooms and more children are going to school, we are making healthcare truly universal, improving law and order and building the infrastructure we need for a stable economy.
"These key areas or economic activity have been made possible because of the approach our country now takes to economic management and business development.
"The PNG LNG project is a very important part of the Papua New Guinea business success story."

Saturday, May 02, 2015

Prime Minister welcomes 10th Successor of Don Bosco

Prime Minister's Media

Prime Minister, Peter O'Neill, has welcomed the 10th Successor of Don Bosco, Rector Major, Fr Angel Fernandez Artime, SDB, and his delegation from Rome, to Papua New Guinea on Thursday.
At a reception dinner held at the Don Bosco Technological Institute in Port Moresby on Thursday, PM O'Neill said on behalf of the Government and people of Papua New Guinea, "I warmly welcome Fr Angel Fernandez Artime and his delegation from Rome.
"I would like to express our appreciation of the good work Don Bosco Technological Institute continues to do in our country," the Prime Minister said.
"What the Churches are or have been doing for many years, illustrates the importance in guiding our men and women to improve their lives and careers."
He acknowledged that Don Bosco had been at the forefront in providing skills and education to many of our citizens for many years.
"Recently our government announced the Church-partnership program, which is providing many good opportunities in our communities.
"Our government has also embarked on an education programme through free education, adding an additional one million children into schools throughout the country.
"However, that would not have been achieved without the support of our church-funded institutions like Don Bosco, and we appreciate the support and the work that they continue to do."
The Prime Minister said ongoing economic growth, the nation needed a more skilled workforce into the future that could ensure that growth continued.
"Don Bosco's contribution to training our workforce and improving the capacity of our youth is immensely valued.
"This is a partnership that we critically value – a partnership we want to continue to strengthen.
"Therefore, I am giving you my absolute assurance and commitment, that this government will continue to support the good work that Don Bosco is doing under the Catholic denomination and further support other churches as well.
The Rector Major and his delegation will be visiting Papua New Guinea and Solomon Islands from April 30 to May 5, to commemorate the Bicentenary (1815-2015) of Fr Don Bosco's birth.

Friday, May 01, 2015

PM O’Neill sounds warning to people involved with illegal drugs

Prime Minister Peter O'Neill has called on individuals who might be tempted to be involved in drug crime to think twice or ruin the rest of their lives.

O'Neill made the comments in response to media requests following recent drug crime stories in the national media.
"In relation to recent arrests in Indonesia of Papua New Guineans on charges of drug possession, it would not be appropriate to comment as these matters are due to appear before the courts," the Prime Minister said.
"Papua New Guinea is providing consular support to those who have been arrested and we will continue to monitor the situation."
"In relation to the broader issue of drug smuggling, be this is Papua New Guinea, Indonesia, Australia or any other country, I have a simple message.  Anyone considering transporting illegal drugs must be prepared for the consequences, and these consequences are serious.  
"In the ASEAN region in particular the penalties for drug smuggling are very strong, and everyone travelling to these countries knows what a serious crime it is to have or carry drugs.  
"The signs are posted at immigration entry points and information is read out on arriving flights.  Travellers are warned that these countries have very strict drug laws, and drug trafficking carries a mandatory death penalty and this is also applied to foreigners.
"Improvements in law enforcement around the region means that there is a much greater chance now that drug smugglers will be caught.
"People who get involved in this illegal activity can expect to be arrested, convicted and given a serious sentence."
The Prime Minister called for vigilance and awareness in families and communities to work together and with the Government to deal with drug problems.
"Drug abuse is a dark cloud over society all around the world and every day countless numbers of people die and families are broken.
"The Government is working through law enforcement agencies and with community organisations including our churches to deal with these issues
"It takes a community effort from everyone to work together to try to prevent people from taking drugs, while at the same time finding and arresting those who are involved with drug crime."

Monday, March 09, 2015

A growing Lae City must have its own government

MEDIA RELEASE

Fisheries Minister Hon Mao Zeming says Lae is a growing city that must have an authority take charge of maintaining infrastructure and delivering its municipal services.
Zeming attended the special Tutumang session in Lae on Thursday, and his prepared remarks were incorporated into Tutumang's  Hansard.
The Tewai-Siasssi MP said Lae's strategic location was importance to the nation and its economic growth.
"It is Papua New Guinea's manufacturing centre. It hosts the nation's largest sea port facility.
"It is the gateway to the nation's multi-billion kina mineral and hydro-carbon projects located in our own province and the highlands region, like Harmony Gold in Morobe and the PNG LNG Project in the Hela province."
But he said before the National Government's intervention in 2012, Lae's roads were deteriorating, gabbage collection was non-existent, street lights destroyed, and businesses struggling to cope.
The city's parks and recreational areas were no longer there.
"All these was happening under the nose of the Morobe Provincial Government, the Lae Urban LLG, and some of the leaders who are spreading misinformation about the proposed city authority," Zeming said.
He said in 2012, the O'Neill/Dion Government acted quickly to restore Lae city.
"The government has allocated over K200 million to upgrade and seal Lae city roads. Many of you can see the result as you drive around the city.
"The government is spending about K300 million to upgrade the Lae-Nadzab road and make turn it into a four-lane highway. Work has already begun on stage one of this project
"Phase 1 of the Lae Tidal Basin Development project has been completed. And Phase 2 is now underway. This K700 million project will transform our port service and ensure business efficiency not only in Lae but everywhere else.
"Over K35 million is being spent to redevelop Angau Hospital. Go to the hospital and see how we have changed the outpatient and the children's ward.
"For the future, the new Angau Hospital will be built for close to K1.6 billion in partnership with the Australian Government.
"The National Airport Corporation is completing a feasibility study to upgrade the Nabzab Airport so it is accorded international airport status.
"This will give us an opportunity to create a township near or around this facility, creating a business hub and providing opportunities for locals there.
"All these development are for the good of Lae city, its residents, Morobe and the rest of PNG. But it cannot happen in a vacuum.
"Lae city needs an authority to oversee these development, to maintain an efficient and effective municipal service in partnership with the Lae Urban LLG and the Ahi LLG, and the Morobe Provincial Government.
"The authority will not undermine or overtake the responsibilities of these entities."
Mr Zeming said he was pleased the Tutumang has agreed to review the proposed Act, and where possible, amendments will be considered.
"What I can assure you is the Lae City Authority is not being created as a power base for anyone."

Saturday, January 17, 2015

Bookworms turn to second-hand shops

By MALUM NALU

With book prices very high, and a reading culture rapidly diminishing and being replaced by Facebook, more and more Papua New Guineans are turning to second-hand bookshops.
Shadric Sandari , 19, (that's him obscured, with the red shirt and army cap while the second-hand shop attendant Eniston Garry shows off the range of books at Waigani Clothes Mart ), from Wabag in Enga and a Grade 12 student at Gerehu Secondary School, is one of those who frequent second-hand shops for their supply of books.
Second-hand shop attendant Eniston Garry showing off the range of books at Waigani Clothes Mart.-Picture by MALUM NALU
 
He was checking out books at the Waigani Clothes Mart on Wednesday when I caught up with him.
“The books which you can buy here, including those by some very well-known authors, are very low in price as compared to regular bookshops,” he tells me.
“It’s very cheap so some of us can buy here.
“There are lots of educational books available, and very cheap.”
Sandari said his parents were strong Christians, who discouraged their children from watching television and Face book, so he and his siblings read a lot.
 “Our parents don’t allow us to watch TV and all that stuff so we read a lot,” he said.
“I think Facebook is affecting a lot of kids in their studies.
“My dad’s a real estate worker while my mum stays at home.
“We used to live in Wewak before coming here.
“Our parents are Christians.
“They believe that watching a lot of TV, Facebook, and all that stuff makes our brains go to sleep.”

Harvesting the fruits of your labour

By MALUM NALU

A young man who makes his living by selling pineapples in Port Moresby has called on young people like him to earn money from an honest day’s work, and not from crime.
Osley Kila, 22, of mixed Central and Gulf parentage, said this while selling the fruits of his labour outside the Big Rooster shop outside Waigani on Wednesday.
Pineapple grower Osely Kila (centre) with his business partners Zachariah Peter and David Tom selling their fruits .-Picture by MALUM NALU


“I live at Laloki where I grow pineapples, and when they are ready, I harvest them and bring to the city to sell,” he said.
“I neither go to school nor work, and survive by my small-scale farming,
“This is my only means of earning money and making a living.”

Kila said he mainly sold his pineapples outside Vision City, Waigani, Boroko, and in Downtown.
‘On good days I make good sales, and other times, no,” he said.

“I make K150-K200 on good days, and on slow days, I only make up to K100.
“I urge other young people like me not to get into trouble, grow and sell fruits and vegetables like me, do something worthwhile to earn a living.

“Stealing is not a good thing.”

Saturday, January 10, 2015

Prime Minister expresses sympathy to France following violent attacks

Prime Minister's Media

Minister of Papua New Guinea Peter O'Neill has condemned the tragic loss of life that has occurred in the series of terror-related incidents in France over recent days. 
He has further conveyed heartfelt sympathy on behalf of the people of Papua New Guinea to the people of France at this difficult time.
"We are shocked and saddened by the attack that occurred in Paris on Wednesday that was followed by hostage situations overnight,"  O'Neill said.
"In a world that today seems so full of violence, the thoughts and prayers of Papua New Guineans are with the families of the victims of these attacks, and with the French people at this time of distress and deep sadness."
The Prime Minister said the attack at the start of the crisis on the office of the magazine Charlie Hebdo was particularly alarming and had deep implications for freedom of expression around the world.
"I know our media fraternity in Papua New Guinea will be acutely aware of this horrific attack, and will lament the tragic loss of their international colleagues.
"Free speech underpins our way of life in free countries. 
"These are terrible and callous acts of violence and we hope that perpetrators who remain at large are brought to justice as soon as is possible."