Swamp Ghost will not be restored

Source - The National

Swamp Ghost, the B17E Flying Fortress that lay in a near perfect state at Agiambo Swamp in Oro province for more than 60 years, will not be restored and flown at airshows as promised by the aviation enthusiast who salvaged it.

American construction businessman, Fred Hagen, now wants to display it at the Pime Air and Space museum in Tucson, Arizona one of the largest air museums in the world.

A news article in the Fly Past, an aviation magazine in the United Kingdom said the Swamp Ghost was last month aboard a ship in New Zealand, on its final leg of the journey to Los Angeles and then to Tucson, Arizona, the United States.

Overseas Aid - What is it Really About?

I found this interesting explanation in the Masalai blogsite  http//www.masalai.wordpress.com 
by Paul on the aid issue. 

" The crux of the overseas aid problem appears at first to be hopelessly complex and difficult to understand. However maybe this is not really so. All one has to do is to break the problem down into the composite parts.

Firstly, why are there any overseas aid programs anyway? Here are a few reasons:

1. Influence – obtaining prestige on the world stage – PM Rudd (previous diplomat) is currently trying to achieve this by upping the aid program to gain acceptance and an ego trip on the world diplomatic stage. His last attempt to do this with the Copenhagen conference of climate change flew like a proverbial lead zeppelin. Hence he is now flying the overseas aid flag to try and get African states to assist in him getting a temporary seat on the UN Security Council. Who cares? Very few Australians that’s for sure. Yet the PNG PM is saying that his country will be a donor country. Go figure, as the ‘skeptics’  say.

2. National Security and Economic Gain – Humankind is very predictable and as each civilisation expands it seeks to excludes others who are in competition with it. This contest may be by open warfare but is usually carried out using economic influence and will include competition for natural resources. Look at the mining and timber industries in PNG as examples. Aid programs are often tailored with this aspect in mind.

3. Guilt – Some leaders of some less developed countries have perfected a very useful method of extracting free money from those developed countries who are considered ‘fair game’. This gives rise to the scenario where the erudite African despot and his secret police are living very well off the aid sent by donor countries who are appalled by the conditions in the despot’s country and want to help. With no freedom of the press and repressive policing, no one except the dictator really knows what goes on in his country and the aid program pays for the PR team (usually made up of overseas consultants who must keep the money rolling in to be paid, and therefore in order to keep the status quo going. Of course, this would never happen in PNG would it?

4. Genuine concern – The high moral ground must be taken by the NGO and Church groups who actually do achieve something, usually with very limited funding and volunteer staff. Not all missions in PNG are useful and some missionaries can be most unhelpful based on my direct observation.

5. Demand – Less developed countries are often lured into accepting aid money as a practical way of becoming more developed. This is a myth and almost every country that has become developed has done so without overseas aid assistance. What has overseas aid to PNG achieved over the last 35 years?

So what yardstick do you use to evaluate the aid program? Surely that should be assessed in long term benefits to the country receiving the aid? Wrong! Why? Because the donor countries get wound up in a never ending cycle of continually giving more because the very aid they give makes those receiving it more and more dependent."

Half of PNG aid budget spent on Consultants

By PNG correspondent Liam Fox, ABC News

There are calls for a major overhaul of Australia's $400 million aid program in Papua New Guinea, after a review concluded more than half of the money was spent on "technical assistance".

Australia is PNG's biggest aid donor and the joint review of the PNG-Australia Development Treaty says there have been some successes, like improving roads and tackling the HIV-AIDS epidemic.

But it has found widespread dissatisfaction in both countries and says the status quo cannot continue.
Australia's aid agency AusAID has been heavily criticised recently amid revelations it is paying some consultants six-figure tax-free salaries to provide technical assistance.
The review says overall the practice has made little difference to life in PNG and this method of capacity building does not work.

The review found Australian aid was being spread too thinly across too many areas and recommended a focus on improving education.
It recommends a reduction in the amount of money spent on technical assistance and says AusAID could do more to reduce the cost of hiring consultants.

The review also says non-government organisations - such as church groups and the health sector - should be given a greater role in delivering aid.

World Vision Australia chief executive Tim Costello says non-government aid organisations are better equipped to help Papua New Guinea.
"What we know about effectiveness in aid is that it is always about relationships, staying there a long time, winning the community trust, getting to the poorest and most vulnerable - not the fly in, fly out high-level stuff that's happening," he said.

Source: http://www.abc.net.au/news/stories/2010/05/25/2908239.htm?section=justin

Nambawan Billboard at Jacksons Airport

Nambawan Super has escalated its advertising and brand selling this year including to the Jackson airport. 

About 750,000 people go through Jacksons airport annually but when you consider those people idling around the front of the Domestic terminal and car-parks, you are looking at about 1 million people milling around Jacksons airport potentially reading and looking at signs every year. 

Nambawan Super is tapping into this visibility potential for their Brand by setting up a Billboard at the Domestic Car park.

Two more signs have been set up – (1) A light box at the domestic check-out foyer (2) A banner at the International Arrival (just above the hire car booths)

Anyone passing by the Domestic terminal will agree – “It (the Nambawan Super Billboard) really really stands out!!!

First ever superannuation certificate training conducted in PNG

Over 20 employees in the superannuation industry have recently undergone a three- day specialised training course in superannuation - the first of its kind to be conducted in PNG for the superannuation industry workers.

The course titled ‘ASFA 100 Superannuation - Certificate IV in Financial Services (Superannuation) was conducted by a training expert from the Australian Superannuation industry, Peter Grace who has worked with the industry since 1985.

The course which is offered initially through a three day workshop, will be continued through an online assessment component in which the course participants will be awarded the Australian national qualification – Certificate IV in Financial Services Superannuation, after successfully completing the course. Among the subjects covered were:  The Control of Superannuation, Investments, Tax and Super, Income Streams and Lump Sum Payments.

Opposition Against Proposed Amendment for women's seats in Parliament

By Harlyn Joku - Post Courier

The Opposition is the first group to come out publicly against the proposed amendments to the Constitution to allow for Reserved Seats for women.
Opposition Leader Sir Mekere Morauta and Deputy Bart Philemon openly voiced their concerns on the proposed women's law at a press conference at Parliament yesterday.
Sir Mekere said the clause in Section 101 and 102 on Nominated Seats need to be deleted from the Constitution before the women's bill was introduced while Mr Philemon said it was a costly exercise and a piecemeal approach.

Both Sir Mekere and Mr Philemon said a holistic approach was needed in relation to the creation of any further seats on the floor of Parliament.
"We do hold the gender and women issue dearly to our hearts but there needs to be a holistic approach to it", Sir Mekere said.

" The Government must be holistic - come up with an electoral reforms package addressing all the election-related matters collectively so members have a full appreciation of the looming problems, the limited time, and the implications of their decision including costs." Mr Philemon said.


Reserved Seats for Women in Parliament

Now that the Constitutional Amendment for Reserved Seats has been gazetted by the Speaker, it requires a period of 21 days before the Bill is presented in Parliament and debated by Members of Parliament. 

Hopefully the Bill will be debated in the third week of this month. 

If the MPs support it and vote for it, it will then be presented in the July sitting for the final reading.

Many of us are looking forward to the first debate on the Bill which hopefully will not be overshadowed by the Maladina Amendments ( re-Ombudsman Commission).

Apparently, the Reserved Seats decision term rests with Parliament. I heard that the current move is temporary and I have been told there is no mention in the proposed laws for the term of office.  

It could range up to two to three terms.  By which time, women who do make it to Parliament in 2012 would have excelled themselves and can try the constituency seats. Albeit we would need the Reserved Seats for some time for the impact to be felt.  

At the end of the day it depends on who gets in 2012 to make the difference.

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