PNG Gossip Newsletter - 26 July 2005

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Neo Melanesian

"Pidgin English"

Tok Pisin English
bos bilong haus host
bosim control / be in charge of
dinau borrow
gavman government
gro grow
halivim / helpim help
han arm / hand
harim hear / listen
holim hold
kago baggage / cargo / goods
kanu canoe
kina kina (monetary unit 100 toea)
kina shell
toea toea (monetary unit 1/100 Kina)
woksop workshop
yusim use
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Remember that this mailing list is meant (mainly) 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 30 - 31 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 -- -- The PNG Business and Tourism Directory also has daily rates based from a PNG perspective

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 and use the submission form.

Articles for this newsletter

To send a message for submission to the PNG Gossip Newsletter -- please click here and use the submission form to make initial contact.

Warning: PNG web sites seem to come and go. The fact of life is that it costs money to host a web site and there is not much return on the outlay to most businesses in PNG. If you do click on a link and use the services or even have some comments to make then please contact the people at the relevant web site and let them know so they at least know that someone has gained some value from their efforts. If you are so inclined then mention that you heard about them from this web site. -- The PNG Gossip Newsletter.

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Want to find out more about Papua New Guinea? Try searching at -- -- and -- -- The PNG Business and Tourism Directory located at -- -- 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 -- -- 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. --

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




Warning: PNG web sites seem to come and go. The fact of life is that it costs money to host a web site and there is not much return on the outlay to most businesses in PNG. If you do click on a link and use the services or even have some comments to make then please contact the people at the relevant web site and let them know so they at least know that someone has gained some value from their efforts. If you are so inclined them mention that you heard about them from this web site. -- The PNG Gossip Newsletter.

Mention of a website or service does not necessarily mean that this newsletter endorses the website or service

Bougainville Copper Mine

The tax office (Internal Revenue Commission) is still attempting to recover back taxes owed by Bougainville Copper Limited (BCL). The Internal Revenue Commission has claimed that BCL has sent K89 million overseas to avoid paying the correct tax on the money.

Business Links

Tourism Offices

PNG Aviation

Wewak Guest House

A web site developed by Michele at Bluefin Consulting Ltd is now online advertising the Wewak Guest House --

Stories About PNG -- A Family Matter by Chips Mackellar -- just one of many articles that can be found at --

News Items

Francis Ona Dead

The president of the Autonomous Bougainville has confirmed that the reclusive leader of the Bougainville secessionist movement has died. The self-styled leader, Francis Ona, succumbed to an illness lasting two weeks on the 24th of July 2005. The Autonomous Government of Bougainville is planning a state funeral for Mr Ona. The United Nations has offered help with flying the body from Panguna to Buka provided his people allow it.

Defence Barracks

The Australian army squadron is helping to carry out maintenance work at the Taurama Barracks along side 40 PNG soldiers. Recently the PNG defence force has been helping to repair Government House but it seems that it cannot maintain its own buildings without help. 63 men and two women from the Construction Squadron usually based in Brisbane, Australia arrived in Port Moresby recently to carry out the refurbishment of the barrack's 15-bed medicals centre, including a laundry facility. They will also help with improvements to the mess, help construct a new ablution block and construct 12 offices for the barrack's headquarters. The work is expected to be completed by the middle of September at a cost of K1.7 million.

Cash Mismanagement

Another person from PNG has been caught for attempting to take too much cash out of Australia without declaring it. This time it was the political head of the oil and gas rich Southern Highlands Province. The politician has been placed on a six-month good behaviour bond for exceeding the allowable amount of AUD10,000 by over AUD3,000.

Telikom PNG

Telikom PNG has just celebrated its fiftieth birthday but many people do not think they have much to celebrate. The service has steadily decreased since its silver jubilee in 1980.

Currently PNG is rated one of the lowest among other Pacific Island nations in telecommunications that comprises of the fixed line segment, mobile and Internet segment and television segment and the lowest fixed-line density. PNG has 700 payphones, by far the lowest per capita phone coverage of all Pacific nations. PNG also ranks with the lowest in internet penetration, less than one per cent of the population, while its internet access costs are among the most expensive in the Pacific Island Nations States.

PNG also ranks among the lowest of television receivers in the Pacific Islands Nations with a TV penetration accounting for less than ten per cent of the population.

The mobile phone segment of the Telikom company have come out to say that now you can expect severe congestion on not only Fridays but also Thursday for the mobile phone network. Basically customers are being told to make calls on other days because there is no solution in sight!

Pacific Mobile Communications, a wholly owned subsidiary of Telikom PNG, have said that the congestion with the mobile phone services every Thursday and Friday was due to the limited number of lines available to them from their parent company - Telikom PNG.

Illegal Satellite Equipment

The Collins and Leahy Company trading as Associated Distributors in Lae have been fined K6,000 for illegally installing and using unlicenced satellite equipment. Many companies are frustrated with the poor infrastructure being provide by Telikom PNG and resorting to installing satellite equipment to bypass the Telikom equipment.

Illegal Border Trade

The Member of Parliament for Ambunti-Drekikir has said that the land border crossing from PNG into Indonesia is a booming place for the shipment of guns, pornography and the sale of vanilla and cocoa. He said that illegal activities were rampant at the border town of Wutung on the PNG side and Merauke and Bewani on the Indonesian side. The town of Wutung has become so prosperous that it is now a town of supermarkets.

New Teller Machines

The Bank South Pacific has installed an automatic teller machine at the Port Moresby General Hospital for the benefit of staff and patients. This was advertised as being the first ATM outside BSP premises but for many years Garden City in Boroko has had two machines on the ground floor of the shopping centre. The bank has said that it will be installing a total of 50 new machines around the country - 30 of these in Port Moresby over the coming 12 - 18th months.

Bank Service

If you are unfortunate enough to bank with the Bank South Pacific (BSP) then maybe the heading for this item should be changed to Bank Disservice. A customer just down from Goroka for a day spent 55 minutes in a queue at the Boroko branch of the bank only to be told by the teller that "I am on my lunch break now - go join the back of the other queue". On the same day the same person went to the ANZ Bank in Waigani where they have a numbering system for customers and also seating although the service is usually very fast so the seats aren't always used. How different the service is between the two banks. One is opening up more ATM's to cover up the inefficiencies or the pig headedness of the staff and the other has a minimal number of ATM's.

Another story from a reader says the BSP advertises their home loan rate every Monday in the Post Courier. This is a great idea except the bank is charging this reader an extra 1 percent on top of the advertised rate. Some of the horror stories that have been verified about the disservice by the BSP makes me wonder if selling off the, what was thought to be, inefficient PNG Banking Corporation was such a good idea. It would appear that the BSP now offers an inferior service for grass roots customers

PNG Hansard

Finally, after many years of neglect, it appears that the production of the Parliamentary Hansard may be getting some attention by the present Speaker of Parliament. The Speaker has said that the area responsible for recording all the Parliament sessions has recently benefited from the purchase of computer gear and recording equipment. He has also said that it may take a long time to get the records straight. The final reports of the Hansard are only up to April 2000 while records from May 2000 up to two weeks ago are only in a draft format.


Bulolo is a very significant town in the history of aviation in PNG. In fact in the early 1930s, PNG led the aviation world for the amount of cargo carried. Over and over again world airfreight records were set and broken by the small fleet of heavy Junkers aircraft flown mostly between Lae and the Morobe goldfield town of Bulolo. Almost the entire township of Bulolo comprising workshops, sawmills, heavy engineering equipment, power stations and numerous other items required by a mining town were all flown into Bulolo from Lae in the 1930's. The plane that helped to set these records, the German-built Junkers G31, was possibly the only plane capable of carry some of the equipment at the time in fact some of the equipment such as big gold dredges were made in sections that took advantage of the huge cargo carrying capability of the tri-motor freighter Junkers.

There were four Junkers G31's operating in the goldfields -- VH-UOU, VH-UOV, VH-UOW and VH-URQ --

Decaying Towns

How many towns are decaying in PNG? Better still don't worry about towns but what about the whole of Manus Province? A friend who visited recently said that they had to survive on sago for the week they were there because there was no rice on the shelves of the shops in the provincial capital. Without even a supply of staple food it was too much to expect luxury food items to be available. To make matters worse the Westpac bank has closed and Ela Motors have shut up shop and left the province. It could be argued that it is time to let the provincial name go and join up with a more prosperous province (if there is one close by)? I thought the Australian Asylum Centre on the island was going to help the province but now it has closed and gone is it worth while for any of the other suppliers of goods and services to be around?

University Grading

The recent troubles at the University of PNG have highlighted concerns by students about the grading system in use by the university. The Higher Education Minister, Brian Pulayasi, has formed a group to look into the concerns of the students.

Air Niugini

Air Niugini has been allowed to continue flying its Fokker F28 and F100 aircraft in the country except for the F100 that has suffered a small spill of mercury. No matter how small a spill of mercury can have disastrous effects on the metal used to build aircraft. Industry sources have indicated that the paintwork should have contained the spill but Air Niugini, not wanting to compromise safety, is getting overseas industry experts to inspect the plane.

South Pacific Games

Athletes from PNG are now in Palau competing at the Sixth Mini South Pacific Games. The games are being held from the 25th of July to the 5th of August. The fundraising activities, to send the athletes to the games, fell short by about K165,000

Textile Industry

PNG has been urged to develop the local textile and garment industry. It is anticipated that the country could save as much as K350 million annually. According to the PNG Garment and Textile Training Industry project manager currently over K350 million is spent on importing clothes into the country. Half of these imports are second-hand clothes and are mostly sold at markets.

East New Britain Clothing

Following the passing of legislation by the East New Britain (ENB) Provincial Assembly for the establishment of a Textile Training Centre the women in ENB will now be able to set up small textile and garment industries in the province. The aim of the centre will be to provide advice, training and technical assistance to help promote the development of an industry in the country.

PNG Adventures

From time to time the Kokoda Trail pops up in one-way or another. It seems to be the one thing along with the Highland Shows, Madang and Rabaul that are mentioned frequently by tourists wishing to come to PNG. The trail or track is well known for its part in the fight between the Allies and the Japanese in the Second World War but nowadays it has become "the" walk to do in PNG. There are plenty of other walks that are possibly better but perhaps the Kokoda walk is the benchmark for physical endurance. Many operators offer the Kokoda Trail complete with carriers to help with the necessary food and camping equipment. Here are some of the operators starting with my favourite, -- -- run by Gail Thomas at PNG Business and Tourism Directory -- -- of course it is up to the reader to make their own choice when choosing any tour company.

Not sure what to expect and want to sample a bit of The Trail? I know that Nikki and Pam at PNG Trekking and Adventures offer a short weekend familiarisation of a tiny segment of the trail to people. This will let you or maybe your body know what to expect without having the pain of trying to complete a full walk across the trail. Not sure if the others offer this or not but I recommend that you ask.

All of the above operators, although specialising in the Kokoda Trail, offer other tours around the country so it is recommended to look at the relevant websites and ask questions.

I mentioned above the Highland Shows, Madang and Rabaul as places that are mentioned by tourists but there is also a walk up Mt Wilhelm, at just a little over 4500 metres it is higher than Mt Kosciusko the highest mountain in Australia. Of course places like the fjords of Tufi, the Black Cat Trail, the walk from Alotau to Dogura -- -- all spring to mind.

PNG Wheat

Feasibly studies by the Department of Agriculture and Livestock have indicated that as well as other areas of PNG wheat could be grown at Pilikambi in the Lagaip headwaters of the Laiagam district of Enga Province. Priority will be given to distributing seed to schools in the area as part of their education program on farming crops. After the seed has been distributed and proved to be able to be grown by the schools local farmers will be considered for seed distribution.

Prisons in PNG

  • Bomana in Port Moresby, NCD also for Central
  • Buimo in Lae, Morobe Province
  • Baisu in Mt. Hagen, Western Highlands Province
  • Keravat in Rabaul, East New Britain Province
  • Bui-Iebi (Yebi) in Mendi, Southern Highlands Province
  • Bihute in Goroka, Eastern Highlands Province
  • Bundaira in Kainantu, Eastern highlands Province
  • Boram in Wewak, East Sepik Province
  • Vanimo in Vanimo, West Sandaun province
  • Daru in Daru, Western Province
  • Ningerum in Kiunga, Western Province
  • Beon in Madang, Madang Province
  • Barawagi in Kundiawa, Simbu province
  • Giligili in Alotau Milne Bay Province
  • Hawa in Tari, Southern Highlands Province
  • Wabag in Wabag, Enga Province
  • Lakiemata in Kimbe, West New Britain Province
  • Kavieng in Kavieng, New Ireland Province
  • Manus in Lorengau, Manus Province

Tumbuna Taim Show

PNG has a new cultural spectacle - The Tumbuna Taim Show. Sponsored by confectionary manufacturer Nestle PNG Limited under its Nescafe brand, it will be staged at the Sir Hubert Murray Stadium in Port Moresby on the 30th of July. An initiative of the National Cultural Commission of PNG, it will be staged annually and will feature PNG's rich cultural diversity in song and dance and feasting rituals. For more info email -- -- or telephone: +675 323 5111. Don't forget to mention the PNG Gossip Newsletter when contacting anyone mentioned in this newsletter.

Coming Events

Mount Hagen Show, Western Highlands Province -- around the 20th of August 2005.

Squash - The K50,000 Steel Industries PNG Squash International has been set to be held between the 16th and 21st of August in Port Moresby.

PNG 30th Independence Day Celebrations -- 16th September 2005.

Hiri Moale Festival -- 15th to 18th of September 2005.

Goroka Show -- Independence Weekend (17th - 19th September)

Tufi Cultural Show -- 17th - 19th September

Morobe Show, Lae -- 15th and 16th of October 2005

The Milne Bay Canoe and Kundu (drum) festival is to be held 4th - 6th of November.

2006 - April 8th to the 16th -- National Game Fishing Titles

PNG Media

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-- THE END --

In Tok Pisin - em tasol

For other ways of saying the end please pay a visit to -- ../emtasol

Some of the ways of saying "that's all" are courtesy of Liz and her friends at the University of Technology in Lae. --

If you can add to this list then please click here and use the submission form.


Created 26 Jul 2005
Updated 16 Sep 2005

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©2005 - 2009 Gia Mann