P.N.G. Gossip Newsletter - 7 Nov 2001

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PNG Gossip Newsletter Meri Milne Bay

Welcome to the Papua New Guinea Gossip - 7 Nov 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 26 - 27 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.

Neo Melanesian

"Pidgin English"
kar car
truk truck
motobaik motorcycle
wilwil bicycle
balus airplane
ples balus airport
bot boat
kanu canoe
pul long kanu paddle
sip ship
bateri battery
brek brake
taia tyre/ tire
winscrin windscreen
waipa windscreen wiper
pasindia passenger


Port Moresby Diocese of the Anglican Church in Papua New Guinea is located at http://portmoresby.anglican.org

Another interesting link is the "Revising the Mihalic project" -- The following link welcomes all with an interest in Tok Pisin! http://coombs.anu.edu.au/SpecialProj/PNG/MIHALIC/Index.htm. This is a collaborative project -- you can help if you know Tok Pisin well. You are especially wanted if you are a Papua New Guinean with regional and dialectical usages of Tok Pisin, or you know trade, occupational, botanical, faunal, nautical or any other specialist subsets of the language. John Burton is coordinating the project.

Does any one have any links they want mentioned? The only rule is that links must be related to PNG.

Pelgen's Bread

I mentioned in the last edition that Pelgen's in Lae were using bread bags to advertise bus routes and other items such as show dates. Another benefit of the plastic bag, used to pack the bread, is that the whole double bag has sponsorship so the bread can be sold cheaper and the consumer ends up with reusable plastic bags as well. http://www.michie.net/pnginfo/pelgens1.html.

Pelgen's Bread Wrapper

PNG Made

For those in PNG especially Port Moresby don't forget the PNG Made Trade Fair. It is being held at the Sir John Guise Stadium from the 9th to the 11th of November.

Big Rooster

The Boroko / 4 mile branch of the Big Rooster chicken outlets narrowly missed being burnt to the ground on Saturday morning. Fire fighters from nearby Boroko fire station managed to contain the fire before too much damage was done.

Sogeri National High

Yet another fire has seen the school at Sogeri consider closing early for this year and possibly open late next year. Seven dormitories and an ablution block went up in flames leaving about 200 grade 11 students homeless just two weeks before the end of their school year. Fire Fighters from Port Moresby decided not to attend because it would have meant leaving the city with not enough fire engines and due to the long distance they thought there was little they could do anyway.

Port Moresby Power

The landowners around the dam that supplies water for the Port Moresby hydro-electric generation plant may pull the plug and stop the water supply if their ongoing demands for adequate compensation are not treated seriously.

Sogeri Landowners

The latest reports are that the landowners from Sogeri and Yonki are combining to push the government for compensation over the use of their areas for water storage mainly for hydro electricity generation. Other landowners from Paunda in the Southern Highlands and the Warangoi area of East New Britain are also expected to join forces.

Chris Haiveta

Politician, Chris Haiveta, lost his Mercedes car to gun wielding criminals early hours of Friday morning as he was leaving Pacific View Apartments on Two-Mile Hill.

PNGDF Air Wing

The Air Wing of the PNG Defence Force lost another pilot. This time it was to politics and not to aviation. The Air Wing has several aircraft ranging from Iroquois helicopters to light aircraft much of which is in an unserviceable condition. Compounding the effect faulty equipment has on pilots all pilots can get paid more working outside the Defence Force so it is little wonder pilots are resigning faster than they can be replaced.

Birth Registration

A pilot registry of children has started in Rigo, Central Province. Rigo is the first area in PNG to try the scheme jointly implemented by the United Nations Children's Fund and the Department of Social Welfare. It is understood that only three percent of the PNG population has been registered. Those registered will receive something taken for granted in many other countries and that is a Birth Certificate.


Apart from the fame of looking after refugees Manus hopes to be able to increase vanilla production from 55 hectares to 200 hectares before the year 2005. Vanilla is becoming a significant crop for Manus.

Liquor Licencing

The liquor licencing chief has come under fire for asking alcohol manufacturers for free monthly supplies.


The Port Moresby Hockey Finals will not be played this weekend due to the PNG Trade fair being held at the Sir John Guise Sports Stadium They will now be played on the 17th of November. Airlink will meet Bismarck in the men's grand final and Rockets will take on Bismarck in the women's grand final.

Rugby Union

The Fijian High Commissioner thoroughly enjoyed himself at the recent Rugby Union matches. Not only did his country win but also he is believed to have had a wonderful time in the outer stand amongst the true "grass roots" supporters of the game. He bought dozens of boiled eggs from one of the vendors walking around and quickly made a favourite of himself by distribution them to the whole grandstand. This was just one of many acts of kindness he showed during the rugby seven matches.

EU Aid

Aid to the value of K500 million from the European Union may be in jeopardy due to diplomatic niceties. Apparently because the EU represents many countries the resident head of the EU is supposed to present his letter of introduction to the Prime Minister. Other diplomatic heads of individual countries present their credentials to the Governor General. The EU representative has been in the country since December and there are fears that he may be recalled soon if he can't present his credentials.

Asian Development Bank

Two grants totalling about K5.25 million for road improvement projects will be provided by the Asian Development Bank.


An investigation is underway into the alleged raid by drunken soldiers on the Sergeants Mess. The soldiers were picked up by military police and have been placed in cells.


The People's Unit Trust will be the vehicle through which PNG citizens will be able to purchase part ownership in major businesses currently in the process of being privatised. The companies are the PNG Banking Corporation (PNGBC) Air Niugini, Electricity Commission, Post PNG, Telikom, Water Board and Eda Ranu, PNG Harbours Board. There will also be 21 other smaller state owned entities up for sale.

It is expected that there will be a small rise in telecommunication fees before Telikom is privatised. At the moment Telikom has borrowings of about K197 million and a working capital deficit of K38 million.

The government has forgiven a debt of about K224 million owed to the government by the electricity Commission. This is basically seen as a subsidy on electricity charges. Without the forgiveness electricity fees would have had to rise considerably before privatisation.

Air Niugini

After the hold up of an Air Niugini staff bus in the early hours of this morning the operation of the airline has been thrown into chaos. Most of the fleet have been grounded. Female members were abducted and males lost wallets / watches and cash. Air Niugini is now considering its options and one of them is to accomodate shift workers closer to the airport. Another is to cancel all early morning and late afternoon flights.

Silver Jubilee

People are still receiving the 25th Anniversary Silver Jubilee medallions even though the country has already past the 26th birthday mark.


After years of waiting it is hoped that Telikom will soon be able to provide detailed telephone statements to residents connected to the Boroko Telephone Exchange. Now - if only the digital mobile network could get a billing system so that people can use it instead of the current analogue system.

Chin H Meen

Chin H Meen has advertised the following prices for analogue mobile telephones.


Napatana Lodge, Alotau's first eco lodge, is now open for visitors. They offer timber bungalows on the bay and an open air bar and restaurant. I am told that the prices are very reasonable. They are able to offer weekend tours and village based activities as one of their specialities. For more information contact grettak@daltron.com.pg

Car Dealers

HF Radio

Datanets -- http://www.datanets.com.pg -- has for sometime been able to supply the Internet over HF radio. 26 missionaries living and working in remote areas of the country have access to the Internet using this method and it is expected that more will missionaries will join up to use the service. A grade six student living outside Goroka has also been able to use the service to seek donor assistance for his village people.

World Vision

Thanks to World Vision sponsorship - four boys from Vadavada settlement have been able to graduate from Don Bosco Technical Training Centre after being trained as welders. The four were dropouts from either grade six, eight or ten and normally would not have been able to progress any further after dropping out of school.

Tourism Offices

The German office of the Tourism Promotion Authority was under threat of closure due to non payment of bills amounting to K250,000. Despite this fact the Minister for Tourism was able to embark on a trip to Paris for a UNESCO meeting. The six officials on that trip were expected to spend around K250,000 on the trip.

The Frankfurt (German) office is responsible for bringing thousands of tourists to PNG and each of those tourists inject substantial amounts of money into the PNG economy.

Pothole City

The town of Lae, usually called the pothole capital of PNG after years of neglect, has recently officially opened many upgraded roads. AusAID provided K40 million in funding in 1999 to start the upgrading project. Barclay Brothers then spent the next couple of years rebuilding the road network within the Lae Industrial Centre as well as many roads connecting to the industrial centre. AusAID also provided K323 million for upgrading of the road that connects the Malahang centre to Lae town. This means that one half of the roads in Lae are now probably some of the best in PNG the other half are still worthy of the title of pothole capital.

Recent Book Query

Three people responded (Kiara, Sharon and Lesley)

Taim Bilong Misis Bilong Armi: Memories of Wives of Australian Servicemen in Papua New Guinea 1951-1975 Compiled by Stephanie Lloyd, Marlena Jeffery & Jenny Hearn. Introduction by Professor Hank Nelson.

Real stories by real people. Army wives tell their stories - of laughter and tears, of loneliness and lasting friendships, of isolation and the special bond that developed between these women when accompanying their husbands on postings to the Pacific Islands Regiment in Papua New Guinea. For most of the women, it was a life-altering experience.

A$28.00 -- availiable online from http://rspas-bookshop.anu.edu.au/

cheers Kiara

and another reply from Lesley
I think the book one of your readers was asking about is:
Stephanie Lloyd, Marlena Jeffery and Jenny Hearn (compilers) (2001) "Taim Bilong Misis Bilong Armi: Memories of wives of Australian servicemen in Papua New Guinea 1951-1975", viii+155pp. Publisher: Canberra: Pandanus Books, RSPAS, ANU ISBN 1 74076 000 X

There are two webpages that mention it:

Best wishes, Lesley

Reply 3, from Sharon in Charleston, USA, has already been adequately covered with the two above but thanks for the reply.

More Books

One Thousand One Papua New Guinean Nights:
Folktales from Wantok Newspaper
Translated and Edited by Thomas H. Slone

One Thousand One Papua New Guinean Nights is a two-volume collection of folktales that were originally published in Papua New Guinea's Wantok newspaper. The folktales were in Tok Pisin, the pidgin English language of Papua New Guinea. This two-volume collection presents the complete set of 1047 folktales published between 1972 and 1997. This book represents one of the largest general collections of Papua New Guinean folktales. All of Papua New Guinea's provinces and approximately 35% of Papua New Guinea's 700 language/culture groups are represented. The first volume includes the introduction and 550 folktales; the second volume includes the remaining folktales, indices, a glossary, a set of maps and a gazetteer. The folktales have been extensively indexed by author, village, original language (or culture group), province, flora and fauna, and folklore motif.

This book is available directly from the publisher at:

and from Amazon.com:
Barnes and Noble

and bamm.com:

Further information about the book and a couple of sample stories can be found at: http://THSlone.tripod.com/1001PNGnights.html

A sample story from Milne Bay, reprinted with permission of the author, can also be found at http://www.michie.net/pnginfo/1001.html

Thomas H. Slone is a staff scientist at the University of California at Berkeley.

Volume 1: Tales from 1972-1985
ISBN 0-9714127-0-7; U.S. $39.95 paperback; 528 pages, 8.25 x 11"

Volume 2: Tales from 1986-1997, Indices, Glossary, References, and Maps
ISBN 0-9714127-1-5; U.S. $44.95 paperback; 613 pages, 8.25 x 11", illustrated

Thomas has one query and that is "I have been unable to locate issue number 1138 from 1996 of Wantok. Please let me know if you can send me the ancestor story from this issue"

Milne Bay Measles

There is a measles outbreak in Milne Bay Province. It was reported in Alotau only but has now spread out to the rural areas as well. Alotau general hospital has since run out of drugs to combat and immunise people against this very dangerous disease due to shortage of drugs.

It is believed that the disease is now out of control. You are therefore required to advise your clients who intends to visit Alotau or any part of Milne Bay Province, to obtain vaccination against measles prior to entering the province.

Isn't it wonderful? New roads are being built in Moresby and Lae and yet a small province like Milne Bay doesn't have money to buy drugs.

Miss PNG

It would appear that the quest only has managed to attract four contestants this year. They are

That's All

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Created 7 Nov 2001
Updated 28 Nov 2001
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