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Date Posted: Sun, May 13 2007, 07:12:02pm

Predicting the up coming 2007 General Elections in Enga is getting very interesting for which I am sure, we all have our own reasons to why we make such divinations. Predictions to an extent where we zero down options to what kind of leaders we want (interestingly ironic); young & educated, for the people, religious, peace loving etc.
In general, majority of Engans have prematurely concluded that someone who is seen as being wealthy automatically becomes a leader, finally being the ultimatum, a political leader.

Any political leader that contests the up and forthcoming elections and preaches about stipulating services for free or development as never been brought forward by langsyne- politicians is purely trivial. To be honest, as being an Engan, we have heard all these allegiances and if I am not wrong, it’s all been prevarications and diddles, if not all, standard hollow promises.

The power to choose someone who is corrupt, misleading, dishonest, educated, illiterate, presumably religious (which most politicians initially claim to be) or someone who is true, capable, right and is believed to be the chosen one is in each and every individuals hands. Making the right decision, that choice, that self-submissiveness to cast a single vote to elect such a politician is the issue. The Engan way of approaching elections need to come to an end. After the death of the late Malipu Balakau, election back at home has totally dilapidated. Bribery, money-play, empty promises (conning), dishonest vote casting (smuggle ballot papers/boxes), use of firearms, have all summed up negatively, being reflected only by a major setback in terms of development and services in the province. On the contrary, a media embellished Enga becomes the talk of the day in other parts of the country. Very familiar statements that any Engan in other parts of the country will hear at the mention of household names like Peter Ipatas, Don Polye, John Pundari, Masket Iangalio etc, include; Action Governor, Right Deputy PM, Maestro Economist or the most Illustrious Speaker of Parliament. Now, these mentioned heads, to be honest, have basically done nothing for the mother province. If they claim to have done what was/is required of them as elected political members, apparently there is no sign of their inputs or efforts. All that is so evident now is the ‘deprived wealth’ they enjoy.

The Free Education Policy for Enga Students we have in place since 1995 is only a banner for political power and knavish strategy executed by the Ipatas Government. The truth to take note is that, it really doesn’t matter whoever becomes the Enga Governor, the Free Education Policy will still continue. (In my next edition, I will explain, clarify, prove and justify that there are Advantages and Disadvantages of having a Free Education Policy in place, everywhere, anywhere. The extremist of the Disadvantages of having a Free Education Policy as taken its toll in Enga and has gone unnoticed.)

Believe it or not, Enga is crumbling and tumbling down fast. Ordinary lived people back home would not really understand the progressive state of the province as everything seems a norm. It is and will be a complicated swing to instigate a well structured awareness campaign to inform the current ethnocentrism society in Enga that the current problems we have is both directly and indirectly akin to Politics. From an observatory position, it is pinpointing(ly) eminent that once again, politics is the abruptest virus that as infected both young and elderly alike in our society where the essence of infrastructural services (education system, health system, roads systems, communication systems) and socio-economical progress is entirely misconceived.
Why burn down hospitals (aid-posts), schools, remove bridges, disrupt power-supply, tie up pigs in airstrips, assault teachers, and the list goes on………when at the end of the day, the people themselves (we) suffer. A quick look at the last fifteen years in terms of progressive development, Enga Province has semi-achieved what would have been at present be termed as ‘truly well developed province’. The current governor can be criticized for his political role in seeing a wealthy province like Enga so stagnant ‘but’ on the contrary, his efforts whether be the subsiding of school fees, construction of bridges, building of commercial complexes, aid posts, schools etc is only evident of what is done by any politician.

Critical analysis of the reasons to why there is continuous hindrance to any form of appreciated development is simply an Attitude Problem. Paragraph five (5) highlights an ethnocentrism society (belief in the superiority of one's own ethnic group) that is predominantly coexisting as the province is driven in a full – frontal encounter with modernization. Individuals back in the village (especially of this generation), need to be properly addressed and informed to accept the development and services brought to them. In this up coming elections, any politicians contesting is challenged to set up his or her strategies solely aimed at winning peoples heart in changing their attitudes.

It is profoundly complex to convince a single person to change his or her way of thinking, acting and behaving but for Enga to change, all winning politicians must critically have plans to enforce all that is in place to inform people back at home (respective electorates) that the local and political way of thinking needs to come to an end if we are to ever progress at all in terms of development.

Finally, I am of the opinion that once people tend to ‘gradually’ change their attitude (way of accepting changes), then and only then, development and services in the province will last longer.


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Date Posted: Sun, May 13 2007, 08:22:43pm

True, True. Attitude, not only for Engans but PNGeans must change for our country to embrace change and modernisation. In order for attitudes to change there must be a catalyst and I believe that catalyst is education.

Right now the current illiteracy level in PNG does not help in any way. If the bulk of our population were to remain illiterate for the next 30 years, I am sad to say that PNG will not only degenarate but accelerate towards a failed nation state.

PNGeans and Engans current attitudes are deeply entrenched in our traditional systems. These attitudes although appropriate for our traditional setting in another time in the past is not compatible with modernisation and the current age we are living in. As a result the modern system with its novel ideas are constantly clashing with our outdated traditional systems. One can witness the outcome of this battle in the concept of wantok system and its other negative offsprings.

I personally think the current administraton is doing a good service to Enga through its school fee initiative. It doesn't matter who came up with the idea, the most important thing is that Enga's children are being educated. This will in a big way contribute towards this change in attitude that we all want.

The new Governor that will be voted into power next year must continue to uphold this human resource policy. The new administration must continue to fund Enga children until the Porgera Gold runs out. Human resource is the key to any country. It is the only resource that add real value into other resources. We must maintain it so that Enga will progress and so will PNG.

New Town

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