P.N.G. Gossip Newsletter - 26 May 2003

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PNG Gossip Newsletter Meri Milne Bay

Welcome to the

Papua New Guinea Gossip Newsletter

A very special welcome is extended to any new readers. If you have comments or suggestions to make then please click here.


Tok Pisin Links
Kayak Voyage to PNG Charlie's Website
Port Moresby Chamber of Commerce PNG Institute of Directors
Phone Calls TISOL
Defence Commander's Cup Visa Fees
Japanese Flights Tourism
Pharmaceutical Drugs Prostitution
Cancer in PNG PNG Boxing
Goroka Water Fly River Schools
Highland Potatoes Highlands Tea
Morobe Province Summer Institute of Linguistics
Manus Jail Bougainville Autonomy
United Nations Concert Mathias Kauage
Gun Statistics Moresby Rice
Saint John Ambulance IMR Goroka
Air Niugini World Environment Day
Highlands Highway PNG Power
MilaMala Festival 3rd PNG Film Festival
Red Cross Media Sites


Articles for this newsletter

To send a message for submission to the PNG Gossip Newsletter -- then please click here.




Neo Melanesian

"Pidgin English"
Neo Melanesian
pasim close / fasten / shut
pasim bel take contraceptives
pasim maus / no ken mekim nois be quiet
pasim sua bandage a wound
samting substance / thing
samting bilong pasim bel contraceptive for females
samting / samting olsem approximately
singaut call out
singaut long call out to
singautim call something or someone



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 in this newsletter, is currently worth around 26 - 26.5 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

Want to find out more about Papua New Guinea? Try searching at http://www.michie.net/pnginfo and http://www.michie.net/png_faqs. The PNG Business and Tourism Directory located at http://www.pngbd.com is also an excellent place to look for PNG information.

For those who are not so familiar with the geography of Papua New Guinea I suggest taking a look http://maps.google.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.


Kayak Voyage to PNG

Don't forget to follow the sea kayak voyage of the "Paluma" from Townsville in Northern Queensland, Australia to Port Moresby (PNG) starting on the 10th of August, 2003 by first vistinig the official website at --

Charlie's website

Check out Charlie's vanishing website at -- http://www.people.cornell.edu/pages/cwh6/photos.html. Out of the many photographs located at this site Charlie has photographs from the Eastern highlands in PNG. Charlie is ready to graduate from Cornell and he says his website will not be available once he has graduated so if you want a look you better do it fast.

Port Moresby Chamber of Commerce

The Port Moresby Chamber of Commerce website is located at -- http://www.pomcci.org.pg

PNG Institute of Directors

The PNG Institute of Directors has revamped its website with the help of an AESOP Volunteer, Peter Griffin. It is an excellent introduction to PNG company law and related governance issues it can be found at -- http://www.pngid.org.pg



News Items

Subscription Probe

I have received reports that some people on the mailing list have not been receiving their newsletters. Obviously, if you are receiving this, then you do not have a problem. The only way I can determine who isn't is to do a "subscription probe". I will be doing that later this week. I understand that many of you, like myself, get heaps of email every day. I apologise in advance for sending yet another piece of mail that really will not be of any value to you.

Phone Calls

The cost of phone calls to PNG from Australia has recently ballooned. Even regular customers such as Peter Goleby at South Pacific Exports <sp.exports@bigpond.com> have been hit hard. It seems that there is no such thing as a preferred customer anymore. The cost of the calls went from 85 cents a minute to AUD2.21 a minute. There have been calls for the watchdog in PNG (Independent Consumer and Competition Commission) to investigate the increase. The reason for the increase has been given as -- PNG Telikom wants to build and increase the telephone network in PNG.


The International School Of Lae (TISOL) now has a luxury of refurbished library with a new electronic-catalogue system. The library has historical significance as it is named after Allan Hooper, a former principal who served the school for 22 years. The library also stands on the old building foundations of the former Bulae School. The cost of the double-storey library was K200,000 provided by International Education Agency.

Defence Commander's Cup

Soldiers from Moem Barracks in Wewak have won the Commander's Cup. The second section of the Second Royal Pacific Islands Regiment (2RPIR) walked away with the cup after a five-day competition that saw soldiers from the First Battalion (1RPIR) at Taurama and Second Battalion (2RPIR) at Wewak pitted against each other.

Visa Fees

The Tourism Promotion Authority (TPA) has raised concerns that it appears that PNG is the only country in the South Pacific that charges the people of the South pacific a visa fee. Fiji, Vanuatu, and Solomon Islands have gone to the extent of waiving all migration restrictions whereas PNG has recently increased visa fees. The TPA says that not only should the South Pacific countries not pay visa fees but it should also be extended to all Commonwealth countries.

Japanese Flights

The Acting Tourism Minister and Labour and Industrial Relations Minister Peter O'Neill has revealed that he has little understanding of the intricacies of global aviation. Mr O'Neill has said that he would look into the possibility of Air Niugini operating an extra weekly flight to Japan. Under the various aviation rules and regulations Japan has the first choice of having the next flight to and from Japan. Only when Japan has either rejected a possible flight or was already operating one would Air Niugini be able to operate a second flight for the airline.


Permanent Parliamentary Committee on Culture and Tourism Chairman, Nick Kuman, has said he is concerned that the various government departments, agencies and authorities had no regard or concern for the culture and tourism industry in the country. He also said that PNG culture is dying and not enough is done to encourage and promote tourism.

Pharmaceutical Drugs

The High Commissioner of India to PNG has donated more than 200 boxes of medical drugs to the National Department of Health. The outgoing Indian High Commissioner presented the boxes of medicine to the Health minister Melchior Pep recently.


Unfortunately because nothing is being done to address the issue of prostitution it has become a major social issue for PNG. Due to the poor economy the number of young girls taking part in prostitution is ever increasing simply because it is an easy way to earn money.

Cancer in PNG

Recently this newsletter discussed issues on the Cancer Unit and the lack of adequate affordable cancer treatment services available for the people of Papua New Guinea.

A reader, Kaih Bomai, has offered the following --

The only Radiotherapy Department for the whole of the 5 million souls in the country has been shut since the 17th of January 2000.

According to a feasibility report by a team of Cancer experts from Australia, in their paper, Cancer - The Hidden burden, revealed an astonishing deaths due to cancer stands at 15 000 souls per year. That figure could be under reported as there is no Cancer registry in the country.

The country lacks an Oncologist - Cancer Doctor. There are four Radiation therapists, but these positions would be now seen as near redundant.

The services needs to be upgraded and basic help could be restored back to the people of this country.

Thanks Kaih. Makes you wonder where the priorities are when roads that were in reasonable condition in Port Moresby were dug up and currently are being replaced at a cost of millions of Kina? Why train Radiation Therapists and have them sit around and do nothing?

PNG Boxing

The PNG Amateur Boxing Union is hosting a corporate gala night of amateur boxing, in a tournament at the Airways Hotel on Saturday 7th June 2003.

The PNG Amateur Boxing Union is seeking sponsorship and is offering various levels of sponsorship, from Major sponsorship of K5,000 or sponsorship of each bout on the night (at K500 per bout - 9 bouts in total) and other donations of cash or kind that can be used to raise money to send our athletes off to the SP Games in June/July.

The purpose of the tournament is three fold:

I. Give international competition to the national team prior to the SP games

II. Raise funding to support the team

III. Give increased exposure of this Olympic sport across PNG.

The night starts at 7pm with meals served between bouts, entertainment and boxing will make this a night not to be missed. Tickets are available at K100 per person or tables of ten at K1000.00. A 3-course meal and a complimentary drink on arrival is included. Tickets are available from Salome Rihatta Ph: 3225525 email: <sari@chevrontexaco.com> or Margaret Embahe 3031257 <membahe@datec.com.pg>

Goroka Water

The residents of Goroka have recently had a new water treatment plant commissioned but this will not help them to get better water pressure. The new plant is the same capacity as the one replaced. The Goroka Town Authority is looking at ways of increasing the pressure. Goroka uses more than 10,000 cubic metres of water a day.

Fly River Schools

Three schools around the Fly River in Western province are facing financial problems. The three secondary schools, Awaba, Daru and Kiunga, are expected to close soon. More than 1,800 students, including teachers, would be affected by the closure. The three schools have been operating by collecting school fees from parents that are salary earners, whilst parents from the rural villages have been struggling to pay the school fees.

Highland Potatoes

Farmers from the Western Highlands of PNG are confident that after a trial run on potato planting that potato blight can be controlled by chemicals. More than 200 farmers along with interested and key players in the combat against the blight visited the Kelta trial project outside Mt Hagen recently and were pleased with the results they saw. The trial has shown them that the potato industry could be managed and kept alive.

Highlands Tea

Waram Tea Plantation, a major tea plantation in the Western Highlands Province, has been wiped out by rampaging villagers. The plantation was reduced to rubble recently by locals disgruntled over royalty issues.

Morobe Province

The police in Morobe province have received five notebook computers thanks to the kindness of Nestle PNG. The company has also donated computers to the University of Technology in Lae and many other organisations.

Summer Institute of Linguistics

The Summer Institute of Linguistics (SIL) -- http://www.sil.org.pg -- has recently celebrated 47 years of operation in PNG at Ukarrumpa in the Eastern Highlands. -- http://www.ukarumpa.com

Manus Jail

The Manus Provincial Government plans to relocate the current jail in Lorengau after interference from a certain landowner group in the operations of the present jail. In the meantime all existing prisoners have been transferred to the jail in Kavieng, New Ireland Province. Negotiations are underway with another landowner group who have indicated that they would allow a jail to be built on their land. Once negotiations are complete the government will approach donor agencies to help fund the building of the new jail

Bougainville Autonomy

Progress is being made towards autonomy for Bougainville. Work, including the establishment of the joint supervisory body to manage the implementation of the agreed autonomy arrangements, is running ahead of time. People are moving around more freely on the Island of Bougainville and Cocoa and copra production is rising.


The PNG Defence Force is in the process of improving its information system by updating to the latest technology. The new system is the first in the Pacific and included a mobile satellite dish. The new system would let the PNGDF communicate with other countries via e-mail or radio by bypassing the current PTC system in times of emergency.


Is there hope for PNG gas? As a result of a recent visit to Japan by Sir Michael Somare, Mitsubishi will undertake to conduct a feasibility study on the US$800 million processed gas project for the Japanese market. The Japanese market would be capable of buying all the gas (methanol) produced by PNG if the feasibility study was favourable.

United Nations Concert

The annual United Nations Concert held by Port Moresby International School had to be cancelled due to rain in Moresby on Saturday the 24th of May. Many truckloads of traditional dancers were seen wandering around lost near the school on Saturday night. Lets hope that they are able to return next Saturday (31st May).

Electoral Commission

The PNG Electoral Commission was cut off from the rest of PNG and the world recently when their telephones were disconnected because they owe about K90,000 Telikom PNG. This is equal to about four months of unpaid telephone calls.

Mathias Kauage

Mathias Kauage, a self-taught world famous artist, has died aged 66. Mathias, originally from Gugulme in Gembogl district, Chimbu Province, personally met Queen Elizabeth in 1990. She has one of his paintings hanging in Buckingham Palace in England

Gun Statistics

It has been reported that there is one licensed gun for every 180 people in PNG. This figure does not take into account the number of illegal guns in the country, which would number many more especially home made shotguns. The Defence Force Commander, Brigadier-General Peter Ilau, has also confirmed sometime year that over 300 military weapons, mostly from the Bougainville crisis, are not unaccounted for. The number of licenced weapons does not include police officers that do not have to be license holders to carry firearms while on duty.

Moresby Rice

Residents of Kaugere in Port Moresby have been able to grow rice. The project was initiated two years ago by Hope Worldwide who supplied garden tools to the Kaugere community. Two other organisations, Don Bosco and Sivarai Namona churches at Bomana, helped by donating rice seeds. Carol Kidu, The Parliamentary Member for Moresby South has also encouraged the project.

Saint John Ambulance

The St. John Ambulance service in Port Moresby has had to close once again due to financial problems brought on by the non-payment of a legal agreement between the Department of Health and the Order of St John. The quarterly grant of K75,000 is overdue by about six weeks.

IMR Goroka

The first component of the infrastructure and the capacity program, which includes building and upgrading of the current Institute of Medical Research complex in Goroka, is already off the ground. This includes the library extension, a new 150-seat lecture theatre, operational research unit and the administration office. -- http://www.pngimr.org.pg

Air Niugini

Air Niugini has re-introduced Fokker F28 flights to and from Hoskins in West New Britain. The airport at Hoskins was closed due to the sudden eruption of Mt Pago. It has been reopened to small aircraft for sometime but it is now considered safe for jet aircraft. Air Niugini will also re-open F28 routes between Hoskins and Rabaul, Lae, Kavieng and Madang and connecting services to Wewak and Buka.

World Environment Day (WED)

The Eco Forestry Forum (EFF) in PNG has planned activities to celebrate World Environment Day (WED) on the June 5, 2003.

Highlands Highway

The Highlands Highway was blocked in the Western Highlands by armed tribesmen from Kutumb. Police from Mount Hagen have cleared the block at Tomba. The tribesmen were protesting over the shooting of one of their clan recently.

PNG Power

Management of PNG Power have made a recommendation to place PNG Power in temporary liquidation. The only supplier of electricity to PNG has been financially crippled for many years. It was even rumoured that they could not get their mainframe computer to be Y2K ready so they moved critical applications to cheap personal computers. It is also rumoured that PNG Power buys electricity from a private supplier for a higher cost than what it charges the consumers of that power.

MilaMala Festival

The Trobriand Island MilaMala Committee has just confirmed the dates of Wednesday the 30th of July, Thursday the 31st, and Friday the 1st of August for the 2003 Festival. The Festival will be held at the main island villages of Kiriwina.

The festival will involve 6 villages and will feature the following:

Day 1: yam carrying and all the activities associated with that stage and dancing until about midnight.
Day 2: storing of the yams; awarding winners of gardening etc; Kula canoe racing; and dancing
Day 3: All participating villages will take part in full cultural performances and feasting.
Village livelihood skills will be demonstrated. Arts and Crafts available for sale.

Every Tuesday and Saturday, the Airlines PNG services a route starting from Port Moresby to Losuia to Gurney to Misima then traces the route back to Gurney to Losuia to exit at Port Moresby.

Current one-way fares per person stand at K319 Gurney to Losuia and K505 POM to Losuia.

For the more adventurous traveller, cargo boats sail from Alotau and service the islands for around K50 per person. Allow for up to 2 days travel as they may call into either Esa'ala station or Gumwawana Island or some other islands en route.

Accommodation is available at the following:-
Butia Lodge +675 6439003 have own transport
Kiriwina Lodge +675 6439001 or 6439009 - have own transport
Cindy's Guesthouse, VBA guesthouse through +675 6411510.
Village stays are most welcome and can be arranged through Serah Clark on <konki@dg.com.pg>
Bicycle hire can also be arranged.

3rd PNG Film Festival

The third PNG International Film Festival is currently under way in Port Moresby. (From the 23rd to the 25th at the Ela Beach School and from the 27th to the to the 31st of May at the University of PNG - Waigani Campus). Films from France, Italy, Japan, Belgium, United States, New Zealand, United Kingdom and Australia will be shown during the festival.

The Festival will also tour various provincial towns.

Goroka -- 2nd to 4th of June
Madang -- 6th to 8th of June
Alotau -- 10th to 12th June
Lae -- 13th to 15th June
Wewak -- 13th to 15th June
Kokopo -- 17th June
Rabaul -- 19th June
Buka -- 20th to 22nd June

Movies including Tinpis Run from PNG, Crocodile Dundee, Priscilla Queen of the Desert, Muriel's Wedding, The Dish, Young Frankenstein, Mrs Doubtfire, Four Weddings And A Funeral, Carry On Cleo, and Tootsie, are to be shown. For more information it is recommended to contact Pablo Ganguli <Pablo.Ganguli@lycos.co.uk>.

Red Cross

PNG Red Cross is appealing to business houses for sponsorship of at least five young women who are eager to take part in the annual Miss PNG Quest. Five girls are ready to start fund raising activities but need the help of the business houses to get and keep the ball rolling.


PNG Media

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-- THE END --

Some of the ways of saying "that's all" are courtesy of Liz and her friends at the University of Technology in Lae. -- http://www.unitech.ac.pg

If you can add to this list then please click here.


Created 26 May 2003
Updated 6 Jun 2003

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