Happenings in Papua New Guinea
Women from the Mumeng area of the Bulolo District in Morobe province display their garden produce at the Mumeng in Agriculture meet at the National Agricultural Research Institute (NARI) station at Bubia outside Lae.-Picture by OSEAH PHILEMON
It's a pity, the government continue to say agriculture is the backbone of this country in the media and policy making but practically there is nothing tangible to show that Agriculture is the primary strength of this country. We just need these food stuff from the mothers and our subsistence farmers to be extended to meet the country's demand for food. I've been eating food from a mine mess for a total of 8 years now but still can not find locally grown food, vegetable, greens, fruits, starch and meat in the mine's messes. This is a disgrace to the intergrity of Papua New Guineans, we are not eating our own food, instead we are importing food from overseas. Please we just need ver much to make everything possible for the mothers and subsitence farmers to get their produce to where the demand is and that should be fair for all of us!!
It is time to organise ourselves and not wait for these unreliable govt agencies that have becaome total failures unto themselves, shamefully..and the nation. Here's a suggestion, set up agricultural cooperatives where our Mother's can go and sell to and these cooperatives become the source of local produce for the mines and other institutions like the Universities, hospitals, schools. I remember way back in the late 70's my high school had weekly purchase from the villages and so we were able to have our weekly supplement of local veges apart from eating brown rice and tinned fish!!! Having lived in Rwanda I have also seen how the Catholic church ( not a catholic myself but this is a great example) made daily purchases from the Rwandan widows of the genocide and the widows themselves ran their vegetable co-operative. Just sharing my views.