P.N.G. Gossip Newsletter - 20 May 2001

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PNG Gossip Newsletter Meri Milne Bay

Welcome to the Papua New Guinea Gossip - 20 May 2001. A very special welcome is extended to any new readers. If you have comments or suggestions to make then please e-mail them to giaman@png-gossip.com

Articles for this newsletter

To send a message for submission to the PNG Gossip Newsletter -- please e-mail your contribution to pngnews.queue@png-gossip.com

Remember that this mailing list is mainly meant for people who have an interest and already know a little bit about the people and geography of Papua New Guinea. The PNG Kina, which is mentioned from time to time, is currently worth somewhere around 31 - 32 United States cents but varies on a daily basis.

If you are really keen on finding out what the Kina is worth a currency converter for most world currencies can be located at http://www.michie.net/pnginfo/moni.html

For those who are not so familiar with the geography of Papua New Guinea I suggest taking a look http://maps.expedia.com and then click on the find a map option. Go to this link for a quick start to a link to a map of Port Moresby. http://www.michie.net/pnginfo/pom-map.html

Also remember that the accuracy of the information in this newsletter should not be relied upon - it is, after all, a gossip newsletter.

Sites to visit

The price of bread has risen to about K2.50 for a 560 gram loaf. This has prompted me to add a PNG recipe as well as a web site or two about PNG food. The Rim Journal - http://www.rimjournal.com - has a recipe about Sepik River Patrol Curry located at http://www.rimjournal.com/recipes/mains/sepik.htm. Take a detour to this site and not only learn about PNG but other areas of the world. Some of the recipes covered are Alamos lime pie | Blue corn posole stew | Boiled peanuts or soybeans | Chargrilled Atlantic salmon | Chutneys | Eggplant parmesan | Flo Chang's fish recipes | Lemon basil salsa | Pasepa Swann's Fiji curry | Pie crust | Sepik River patrol curry | Slow-roast lamb | Smoked salmon soufflé with dill | Spice pumpkin pie | Sweet potato spread | Sweet rice | Tamale pie | Winter squash: acorn maple | Winter squash: butternut ginger

Chicken Taro Bake

Rather than take up space here more recipes can be found starting at http://www.michie.net/pnginfo/recipe1.html.

Moresby Arts Theatre

The MAT is staging a Kevin West adaptation of the classic 60's Stanley Kubrick - Peter Sellers film - Doctor Strangelove. The production will be held at the Moresby Arts Theatre from the 23rd of May to the 26th of May and then from the 30 May to the 2 of June. For those in Moresby tickets will cost K30 and will be available from the Ela Beach Hotel.


The Motor Vehicle Insurance Limited is set to be sold through a competitive international tender.

Postage Stamps

The rate of postage within the country has risen to 35 toea except for mail within a province which stays at 25 toea per letter. Overseas postage rates have also increased.

Road Works

Works to the value of K40 million are to be overseen by two foreign companies. The work is to be carried out in Central, Oro, Morobe, West New Britain, East New Britain and Manus provinces.


It has been reported that trauma is the highest cause of requiring surgery in the country. It caters for 30 percent of patients in Port Moresby and as high as 40 percent in the Highlands. The most common cause of trauma is assault followed by motor vehicle accidents. The common cause of death from trauma was due to head injuries.

Breech Births

The incidence of a mother having a breech birth is higher in women from the Mamose and New Guinea Islands than other regions of PNG. A five-year study, at the Port Moresby Hospital, has revealed that women from these provinces run a higher risk than other women.

PNG Health

Watching the news and reading the newspapers shows that PNG often has the sophisticated technology that allows people with serious problems such as heart diseases to be diagnosed. Unfortunately the medical infrastructure does not allow these people to be treated other than long stays in hospital whilst relatives attempt to raise the thousands of Kina necessary for overseas trips and operations. It might seem callous but previously a person remained relatively happy and died - now they are diagnosed and worry for years until they die. Who knows possibly the worry has even contributed to the shortening of their lifespan even further. This could hardly be called a great step forward in medicine? I suppose that the "big people" can go overseas and receive treatment but the grass roots people have no choice other than worry. I suppose you have to give every one a fighting chance!?

Community Health

The General Secretary of the Community Health Workers Association, Jack Suao, has claimed that most community health workers (CHW) around the country are employed as casual workers. The CHW's perform extremely well in often very trying conditions yet receive little recognition for what they do.


Strange things are happening around the country. The local press are advertising roadwork tenders supposedly funded by politicians. They are mentioning donations by prominent people. People who haven't been seen for many years are calling press conferences. Ah! Wait! An election is coming isn't it! That says it all. It is the time of promises and most likely a few free handouts with no strings attached. (well not many strings!!??)

Indonesian Border

The border post at Wutung, on the Irian Jaya border is to become an international port of entry.

Madang Squatters

Gargari squatters evicted from their makeshift shacks in Madang have been urged to return to their home provinces by a police spokesman.


Lae based firm, Whitecorner Machinery, has been contracted by the National Agricultural Institute (NARI) to build a rice huller. This is believed to be the first by a national company. The company has also recently completed 100 coffee pulpers for coffee growers in the Yangoru area of East Sepik.

State of Origin

Although it is an Australian competition the whole of PNG stops when the Aussie states of Queensland and New South Wales play their annual Rugby League competition. Air Niugini has tried to cash in on this by offering cheap flights and three nights twin share accommodation to Sydney for devoted fans. The price includes one match ticket per person all a for reasonably low price of K1070.


The Eco-forestry Forum has launched an information booklet on small-scale saw milling which contains basic information on topics that are relevant to the use and maintenance of a small scale sawmill. The booklet is available free of charge from the forum at PO Box 590, Kimbe, West New Britain.

Moitaka Speedway

The speedway season is well and truly underway. The racing is being held on Saturday afternoons at the Moitaka showgrounds. Car range in size from four cylinder Mazda's to eight cylinder Ford vehicles. Some of the cars have been modified so much that it is difficult to see what the vehicle started life as.

Illegal Aliens

Five Chinese men who landed illegally in Kimbe over two years ago have finally been apprehended working on a chicken farm at 17 mile just outside Port Moresby. One man was deported recently and the other four are awaiting trial on the 24th of May.

Lae - Independence Drive

AusAid has help to fund many road projects undertaken by Barclay Brothers in Lae to slowly but surely rid Lae of the name of Pothole City of PNG. Bitumen and Civil Engineering have also given a face-lift to Lae's Independence Drive which was supervised and funded by the Lae City Council to the tune of K185,000. Port Moresby has quickly sunk low enough to catch the title of Pothole City. It seems that whilst major road reconstruction works are being undertaken on the National Capital no work is being done on existing roads.

Ela Beach Hotel

The Ela Beach hotel http://www.elabeachhotel.com.pg is revamping its old Ace of Clubs by refurbishing it along with giving a new name - Tropo's. The official opening has been scheduled for the 23rd of April but like most things will be open to the public before then.

Accommodation Sites

MV Sankamap

An undertaking has been made to make a final payment of K370,000 sometime this month so that the MV Sankamap can be returned to Bougainville. The money is part of the K1 Million put together by the National Government and AusAID for the refit of the vessel.

Distance Learning

Long Distance Education is receiving top priority this year. It has been reported that in a country with a population of somewhere around 4 million as many as 2 million children and adults are not able to benefit from gong to school. It is anticipated that a higher focus on distance learning would be able to help these people.

Cabinet Reshuffle

Due to yet another reshuffle the following is now the cabinet line up in the PNG government. Be warned it will be changed frequently between now and the elections if past experiences hold true.

Opposition Leader

Due to the prolonged illness of the Opposition Leader Bill Skate the shadow minister for Infrastructure development Thomas Pelika has been appointed as the acting Opposition Leader.

PNG media related sites

For anyone who has read this far I couldn't resist adding another recipe using ingredients found in Papua New Guinea.

Baked Sweet Potato

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Created 20 May 2001
Updated 20 May 2001
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