P.N.G. Gossip Newsletter - 16 Feb 2004

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PNG Gossip Newsletter Meri Milne Bay

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Papua New Guinea Gossip Newsletter

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Neo Melanesian

"Pidgin English"
Tok Pisin English
man man or male
meri female / wife / woman
pikinini baby or very young child
mangi older children and teenagers
yangpela young man or woman
lapun old man or woman
kanaka indigenous person
kandere uncle / maternal
gel / meri girl
hausboi / hausmeri servant
pamuk meri harlot
planti man na meri crowd



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 29 - 28.5 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.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.


PNG Diving

The following is sample of some of the many web sites dealing with diving in PNG. It is not a complete list and if you would like your organisation mentioned in this newsletter please let me know.

Dive Discovery -- http://www.divediscovery.com//png/

Mike Ball Dive Expeditions - Scuba Diving the Great Barrier Reef, diving... -- http://www.mikeball.com/

Diving Liveaboards and Diving Resort Packages in Papua New Guinea ... -- http://www.divingtravel.com/png.htm

Scuba diving Milne Bay, PNG. Liveaboard dive charters. -- http://www.png-diveboat.com/

Diversion Dive Travel -- http://www.diversionoz.com/en/png.htm

Peter Hughes Diving, Star Dancer -- http://www.peterhughes.com/phstar/starmain.htm

Merchant Vessel FeBrina -- http://www.febrina.com

Tufi Dive Resort and Telita Cruises -- http://www.tufitelita.com/index.html

Some more dive related links


Miscellaneous Sites

The unofficial Port Moresby High School site is located at -- http://www.maipng.com/pomhi/

The Port Moresby Chamber of Commerce website can be found at -- http://www.pomcci.org.pg

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

Papua New Guinea Institute of Accountants -- http://www.pngia.org.pg

http://www.rotary.org.pg -- Rotary Club of Boroko and Papua New Guinea

http://www.foda.org.pg -- Friends of the Disabled Association


South Pacific Exports

If you need that hard to get part for your electrical / communications gear or even a special tool send email to Peter Goleby at < sp.exports@bigpond.com > - he might just be able to help you out or at least point you in the right direction. Peter claims he will attempt to get anything legal for you so long as he can add a small amount to cover his own costs.


Bougainville Link

This site, By Edwin O. Booth, is dedicated as a resource to the Veterans of WW II and their families and friends... and to the native citizens of Bougainville who assisted the Americans in WW II. Special attention is given to personnel of the Americal and the 37th Infantry Divisions. It offers a generous selection of publications related to the Islands as they were in the old days, as well as updates on current information and facilities. -- http://www.geocities.com/edbooth_1/


Milne Bay

The Milne Bay Tourism website can be found at -- http://www.milnebaytourism.gov.pg

Discover in Milne Bay the charm and beauty of a peace loving people blessed in abundance with natural environment of pristine waters and varied landforms, unique flora and fauna, vibrant cultures and living traditions.


Masurina Lodge - Alotau

Masurina Lodge is the oldest hotel in Alotau. For many years it was the only hotel. The website to visit for Masurina Lodge is --http://www.masurina.com -- and not -- http://www.masurina.com.pg -- The .com.pg site is a mess when viewed with my version of Internet Explorer (v6) and virtually unreadable. The straight .com site is much better and is now the official site. The site is linked to the Marlin 1 dive boat charters website located at -- http://www.marlin1charters.com.au/ -- The Marlin 1 site claims that you can see the best of coastal PNG from the Safety and Comfort of a well equipped and surveyed live-a-board charter boat.


Napatana Lodge - Alotau

Napatana Lodge is the first eco-tourism lodge in Alotau. It is a traditionally built pole house that has been made from tropical timbers. The lodge reflects Milne Bay architecture, demonstrating traditional building skills by local craftsman -- http://www.napatanalodge.com


Kulau Lodge - Rabaul

http://www.global.net.pg/kulau/ -- Kulau Lodge Beach Resort is located only 12 minutes drive from Rabaul along the beautiful North Coast Road.


Ambua Lodge

Located in the Tari Gap area, Ambua Lodge borders on pristine mid-montane rainforest at the beginning of the valley grasslands. This location promises the visitor eternal spring weather and magnificent views of the Tari Valley. -- http://babs.com.au/ambua/index.htm



News Items


The National Superannuation Fund is ready to pay members a 12.5 percent interest payment beginning at the end of February. This is after announcing that the profit after tax for the year 2003 was K53.02 million.


Ramu Sugar

Ramu Sugar will plant a total of 10,000 hectares of oil palm in the Ramu Valley with as much as 2000 hectares of that total expected to be planted by the year 2006. The oil palm seeds have been purchased from New Britain Palm Oil.


PMGH Board

Sir Brian Bell has been re-elected as the chairman of the Port Moresby General Hospital Board by the Department of Health. Other members of the board are Kaii Dagam (Health Dept Rep), Epeo Tanda (local business sector), Pastor Tony Dalaka, Dr Simon Mete (public Hospital Staff) Sose Tamarua (community rep), Kathy Johnston (local community) and Dibili Dleya (also local community).


Australian Advisers

It is believed that Australian advisers, that will take up senior positions in the PNG Government under the Enhanced Co-operation Program, will be heading for Port Moresby either this or next week. Eight officials will initially take up positions in the PNG departments of the Treasury, Finance, Personnel Management, Customs, Foreign Affairs and Immigration. The program was announced by the PNG and Australian Governments last December and aims to improve law and order and economic management in the country. Almost 300 Australians will be deployed to work side by side with PNG counterparts - many of them located in the Royal PNG Constabulary.


Kainantu Gold

With construction work on the US$30 million Kainantu gold project expected to start this year there has been a rush of job applications being submitted to the Highlands Pacific office in Kainantu. The mine will be a small-scale operation similar to the Tolukuma mine in Central Province producing about 120,000 ounces of gold per annum and employing 240 workers at the mine site.


Kosher Fish

Another multi-million Kina tuna loining plant will be set up in Madang to can fish in the kosher way for the Jewish market overseas. Apart from competing for labour resources the factory will not compete with the existing RD Tuna factory in Madang who do not prepare fish in the kosher way. The Prime Minister, Michael Somare, has just officially commissioned another tuna plant in Wewak, East Sepik province on Saturday the 14th of Feb.


Horse Machines

Despite efforts to remove the many horse racing machines seen around the streets of Port Moresby they are still being used by school age children. A senior government official has called on the Police Minister to explain why the machines are still being operated. The National Executive Council has outlawed the machines and the National Gaming Board wants them removed. It is claimed that the owners of the machines are making as much as K150 a day from every machine and paying no tax on that profit.


DNA Testing

A district Magistrate at Tabubil has ordered that a DNA test be performed to determine whether two employees of Ok Tedi Mining are the fathers of two children. The results of the DNA Tests, performed in Melbourne, Australia, should be ready after 10 days.


Joyce Bay

The cleanup at Joyce Bay previously known as Kila Kila Horse Camp is continuing with the weekends set aside for a major clean-up of the area. The people have also cleared a suitable area to operate a local market.


Strong Family

Attention all ex Lae residents of many years ago! The PNG Business Directory has just received a message from Todd Strong and it is worthwhile to repeat it here.

Quote: Hi My Name is Todd Strong and my family lived in Lae for 23 years. I am just sending you an email to ask if you would kindly post a message on your website to all the friends of my Brother Brett Strong son of John and Jillyan Strong with myself the second child Todd and Rhys the youngest of the Strong clan.

Brett and I were both Bulae Babies then went to L.I.H.S and left in 1989. Brett moved to Denver U.S.A in 2000.

This is just to let anybody who knew him know, that he died on the 28th of May 2003 of Chronic Myloid Leukaemia. My parents would love 2 hear from anybody who knew Brett who lived in P.N.G at the same time as us.

We have lost contact with so many people it would be great to hear from them again. Dad was the manager of S.P. Brewery. Thank you. Todd Strong (any feed back would be great)
<toddstrong70 @ hotmail . com> or <masterstrong70 @ hotmail . com>
End Quote


Public Trust

A National Court Judge has said that the trust of the people of PNG once had in their public officials has been dissipating at an accelerating rate. He added that public money and public assets were unfortunately no longer considered safe in the hands of public officials. He also said that second and third parties could easily negotiate government cheques stamped "not negotiable". See the next item on Tax Fraud. I wonder what comments those remarks will bring from the public service?


Tax Fraud

A budget officer based in Lae with the Internal Revenue Commission (IRC) has been arrested and charged with the misappropriation of K26,000 belonging to the IRC. The person concerned had allegedly submitted a claim to buy housing materials using the normal government orders and claim forms. A government cheque was raised and then converted into a Bank South Pacific cheque for the same amount. The new cheque was taken to a hardware store and used to purchase housing items worth K19,940.34, which were intended to be shipped to the accused home village. The accused has also made false claims for ghost names on the government payroll taking the total amount defrauded to about K26,000.


Tax Payments

The Public Accounts Committee has heard that Air Niugini has paid the Internal Revenue Commission back taxes amounting to K9.6 million in December 2003. The PAC was also told that Air Niugini has already filed its 1999 and 2000 tax returns and that the 2001 return was lodged on Thursday last week (12 Feb 2003).


Fokker F100

Air Niugini has scheduled a Fokker F100 to do the Cairns - Port Moresby routes before the concession given to the aging Fokker F28's expires in early April this year. The F100 is capable of carrying 100 passengers but Air Niugini has indicated that they will configure the plane with a business class section and limit the number of seats to around 80. The F100 will also be flown to Lae to maximise the use of the plane. Planes flown solely in PNG do not get a chance to maximise the possible number of hours flown because of failing navigational aids and a law and order problem. Most flights are conducted during daylight hours only and maybe as much as another eight possible hours of flying time are lost.


Goroka Airport

I believe that the damaged navigation lights at Goroka Airport will be replaced soon at a cost of K75,000. Having recently landed at Goroka and seen the condition of the airstrip I wonder whether the F28's will ever fly back there. It appears that the vandals have stolen the windsock and the pole it was on and the plane I was in had to dodge a rather large pothole in the runway after it landed. This is, of course, after ploughing through the grass that would make a mess of an F28 jet engine. I hear that the Eastern Highlands Provincial government have plans to purchase a 50 seat aircraft for about $US5.5 million before the end of next month so maybe the government doesn't want F28's to return to the province but I do not think that is the case?


Sinking Ships

It must be the time for ships to sink in PNG waters. The MV Benoma capsized near Port Moresby recently. There were about 50 passengers on board at the time of the mishap. The ten-metre MV Benoma was built locally to help the people of Milne Bay travel to and from Port Moresby. The boat had been providing a weekly service between the two provinces since the year 2000.

The MV Tara Spirit sank in Port Moresby this week and attempts are being made to refloat it. The Tara Spirit went into service to help the people of Gulf Province travel to and from Port Moresby only three months ago. The ship became stuck on a sandbank on its maiden voyage to Kerema in the Gulf Province in November last year.


Nickel / Cobalt Project

The Governor of Milne Bay has doubts about a recent project announced by the PNG government that would see the mining of Nickel and Cobalt by a big Chinese mining company. He has said that he wants to see the fine print in the proposed project before he will be convinced that it will be a good deal for PNG. He is concerned that giving away tax concessions to the Chinese company will mean that the PNG government will lose out on any benefits that the project might bring. He is also concerned that the Government's association with Taiwan may sour the deal in the long run.


Public Transport

A group of taxis in Port Moresby now boast the fact that they offered a metered service for customers. No longer will customers have to haggle a price to get from A to B. The taxis can also boast the use of two-way radios to keep in touch with their base. From memory this is taking the taxi services in Port Moresby back to the early 1980's. The use of Jeepneys, from the Philippines, has also been mentioned again but the National Land Transport Board has earlier this month rejected an application for a car dealer's licence by a group believed to want to bring the Jeepneys into PNG.


Lae Morgue

The morgue at the Angau Memorial Hospital has now been closed until further notice.


Jail Breakout

There has been yet another breakout from the Buimo prison in Lae. This time several of the prisoners have ended up in the Angau Memorial Hospital with gun wounds and one has ended up in the morgue although with the morgue closed it is not sure where the body is being held. The breakout happened during a change of guards at the jail and it is believed that a hacksaw was used to cut through the cell wall and the fence. It is thought that construction workers repairing the jail's perimeter fence may have left behind the hacksaw.


Security Breach

A serious breach of international security was discovered on a flight to Singapore recently. A passenger informed the cabin crew that he had accidentally brought a handgun on board the flight. The cabin crew informed the captain of the aircraft and the captain voluntarily secured the gun. The passenger was refused entry to Singapore and brought back to Port Moresby where he was detained in the police cells. The incident has severe repercussions for all international travel because it leaves the question unanswered as to how a gun can slip through all the security measures at the airport. Both Air Niugini and the Civil Aviation Authority are saying very little about the incident until a full investigation is completed.

A security company, believed to be contracted to perform checks at the airport has said they can't comment because they are contracted to the relevant authority that should be the ones to comment. As the gun carrying man was part of an official delegation going to China, ahead of the visit by the PNG Prime Minister, it has been assumed that he went via the VIP lounge and it has been alleged that VIP'S seldom have there bags checked as thoroughly as normal overseas travellers. That admission in itself has worried many regular travellers and security officials.


Approx Exchange Rates

++ 0.3728 = Australian Dollar, AUD
++ 0.2950 = US Dollar, USD
++ 0.2300 = European Euro, EUR
++ 0.3864 = Canadian Dollar, CAD
++ 1.6951 = Danish Kronor, DKK
++ 0.4853 = Fijian Dollar, FJD
++ 2.2910 = Hong Kong Dollar, HKD
++ 13.1709 = Indian Rupee, INR
++ 31.02 = Japanese Yen, JPY
++ 0.4161 = New Zealand Dollars, NZD
++ 2.0197 = Norwegian Kroner, NOK
++ 16.36 = Philippines Peso, PHP
++ 0.4914 = Singapore Dollar, SGD
++ 2.0847 = Solomon Islands Dollar, SBD
++ 1.9233 = South African Rand, ZAR
++ 2,0810 = Swedish Kronor, SEK
++ 0.3614 = Swiss Francs, CHF
++ 11.3862 = Thai Bhat, THB
++ 0.1558 = United Kingdom Pound, GBP

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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 send email to PNG-News@pnggossip.com


Created 16 Feb 2004
Updated 16 Feb 2004

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