A leap of faith: #Huonville Parents, teachers build temporary classrooms without Govt funding

Parents and teachers at Huonville Primary School in Lae have begun building two temporary buildings   to allow for more that 1400 students to return to class.

Two weeks ago, six classrooms were condemned by the Building Board and the   Papua New Guinea Fire Service. The decision forced the school to send home more than 1400 students.

Last week, the school’s administration began an appeal to raise money for the construction of temporary classrooms to house the students.

The foundations have been set.

They’ve raised K20,000 for this project in two weeks. But from here on, it is starting to be a leap of faith. They don’t know where the money is going to come from to complete these two large buildings.

“I am calling on the Governor to come here and see this for himself,” said the Chairman of the Parents and Citizen’s Association, Anton Warakai. “This is a big school.”

So far there has been no help from the Morobe Provincial Government or the National Government. The state of the school and the fact that 1400 students have been sent home is an embarrassment for the Morobe Administration.

The so called infrastructure component of the Tuitions Fee Free Education was never paid since 2013. School records show that the Education Department owes Huonville close to half a million kina. It’s the same story for schools all over Lae City.

“I have gone to the school myself. I’ve also asked for the records which I will take to the minister and push for funding,” said Lae MP, John Rosso. “It makes things hard for the school with TFF not arriving on time.”

Two weeks ago, P & C Chairman, Anton Warakai, expressed anger at the delays in the TFF saying the policy was just nor working for many schools in Lae.

“The Government is lying to us. It should come out and tell the truth.

After a lot of public pressure slamming the government over the apparent failure of the TFF in various schools all over the country, The education Minister, Nick Kuman, has come out stating that the Education Department owes Schools more than K140 million

For now, that statement is of little value to Huonville Primary, who need at least K4 million kina to replace their condemned classrooms.


Brian Kramer stops NICTA deactivation plans with stay order

Statement by Bryan Kramer:

This morning I moved an urgent application seeking a stay (stop order) against NICTA from deactivating some 1.4 million mobile users throughout the country who have yet to register their SIM Cards. The application sought an interim stay and 14 days to commence formal proceedings.

After considering the arguments raised and the issue of short service on NICTA, the Court granted by consent interim orders that NICTA is prevented from deactivating any unregistered SIM cards following 30th April 2018 deadline – which ends today at midnight.

I have been given 14 days to commence and file formal proceedings and serve on NICTA as well as the State.

The decision to file an application at the eleventh hour before the deadline followed my discussion with Dr. Jimmy Aipit on Saturday in Madang.

Dr Aipit has been a Pediatrician for Madang General Hospital for the past 12 years – a Pediatrician is a Medical Doctor who specializes in the development, care, and diseases of babies and children.

Dr Aipit raised concerns with relation to the 600 health officers he communicates with on a regular basis providing life saving medical advice for patients in the remote and rural parts of my Province.

I also shared the same concerns as the majority of my constituents reside in remote and rural parts of my district. They contact me from time to time via mobile telephone to assist at times of emergencies.

Over the years I have I have been contacted directly to assist in maternal emergencies.

Following the discussion with Dr Aipit I jumped on a plane the same day to fly to Port Moresby to file an urgent application to obtain a stay against NICTA.

My application was filed and heard yesterday (Sunday) exparte (without serving the other party). With the deadline on Monday, the Administration Judge on duty refused to hear the application and ordered I serve on NICTA and State and matter be adjourned to 10:30 this morning.

Today I explained to the Court that I have grave concerns with the looming deadline and the impact of deactivating unregistered SIMs may result in loss of life and well-being of my constituents in my district as well throughout the country.

Following the Courts decision to grant interim stay, 1.4 million people throughout PNG who have yet to register their SIM cards can be rest assured it won’t be deactivated – at least for the next 14 days and/or until the matter is determined by the Court.

I am not challenging NICTA’s right to impose SIM registration, I am however challenging the manner in which it is imposing on 87% of our population who reside in remote and rural parts of our country and the effect it would have on their daily lives.

Foreign Service Officer, Phil Senginawa, highlights possible solutions to SME obstacles

The growth of Micro and Small to Medium Enterprises (MSME) plays a critical role in transforming any developing economy. Countries in the category of emerging economies in the APEC region that has a focus on promoting the MSMEs such as Indonesia, Malaysia, Peru, the Philippines, Thailand and Viet Nam have formulated policy frameworks, created institutions, created market spaces and provided stimulus package to promote the growth of MSME that contributes to transforming their economies.
Papua New Guinea has a dual economy comprising of a formal, corporate-based sector which makes up 20% of the economy and a largely based informal sector where subsistence farming makes up bulk of the economy. A growing informal industry which is making inroads into the informal sector if the handicraft and artefacts market.
PNG currently has less than 50,000 SMEs and if they are further categorised, over 50 percent of them could be classified as micro with a profit base not over PGK200,000.
Since 2016 after the launching of the National SME Policy framework and the SME Master Plan 2016-2030 with a promise of a stimulus package to promote the growth of SMEs, little has been done to implement this policy. An increase in the number of SME’s with a monthly supplement of success stories of SMEs would have indicated the success of the government’s drive to promote MSMEs.
The stagnation in the growth of MSMEs in PNG over the last 5 – 10 years is because commercial banks are 80% reluctant on lending credits to MSMEs due to lack of collateral and track records. There are many Papua New Guineans with good ideas willing to start up business but commercial banks are reluctant to issue loans because there is no form of guarantee to cover part of the default risk or their financial track record.
Establishment of a Financial Institution such as a Credit Guarantee Scheme or Corporation in PNG can be in the right direction to promote fruition of ideas into growth of MSMEs. The National SME Policy and Master Plan 2016 – 2030 aims to create a credit guarantee corporation similar to the Malaysia’s model of CGC which is has successfully promoted the growth of MSME by supporting more than 900,000 MSME’s with credit guarantees.
What PNG needs to propel the growth of its SME sector is to establish a Credit Guarantee Scheme. The CGS should provide credit guarantee to MSMEs that lacks collateral and track records with any commercial banks as security to secure loans for start-ups or further expansion of business. The CGS should also provide credit ratings to commercial banks for MSMEs.
The CGCS would provide credit ratings to commercial banks for the MSMEs probability of default in one year should be 10%. CGS should employ a risk base charging criteria with 70-80 percent of the risk covered by CGC on a 3 – 8 years financing tenure similar to the Malaysian model.
To ensure that MSMEs have Credit Guarantee and favourable credit ratings the CGC should partner with commercial banks and recommends or choose commercial banks for MSMEs to obtain credits or loans to start of expand their MSMEs.

You should watch this documentary about Taiwan’s buai industry

This short documentary is an interesting look at Taiwan’s betelnut industry.

A multimillion dollar industry revolves around the betelnut. It is the second biggest local commodity to rice.

There are plantations, processing facilities and shops that serve millions of Taiwanese who chew the buai.

Photo essay: SMEs in Vietnam and the lessons PNG can learn

I hate to let good pictures go to waste.

These are images taken of Small to Medium Enterprises (SME) in Vietnam.  The important lessons that can be learned are:

  1. Strong government support
  2. Tax cuts
  3. Technology improvement and access
  4. Ownership by the people

Lae City to host 5th Provincial Karate Championships, June 9-11


As Lae City’s Karate community prepare to host the 5th  Provincial Championships in Lae Morobe Province, I am reblogging a blog post by Karate Nerd, Jessie Encamp. 

His insight as a Westerner into Japanese culture is interesting, youthful and humorous in the serious world of Karate. 

By Jessie Enkamp

“How did training go?”

“Great! Sensei didn’t remark on anything!”

That’s what I answered my friend after visiting a new dojo in Okinawa, Japan.


I was so naïve!

You see, if a Japanese sensei doesn’t criticize your techniques, it’s a BAD sign. That means you’re not ready to improve.

I thought it was a GOOD sign.

But what else would you expect from a 20-year old Swedish dude chasing his dreams in the birthplace of Karate?

Despite having studied at Okinawa University for many months by then, I still didn’t understand the Eastern mindset.

I decided to learn the hard way…

Here’s what I discovered:

1. Process Oriented vs. Goal Oriented.

In the West, we are hyper focused on goal setting.

Nothing wrong with that. I love smashing goals myself.

But in the East, it’s about the journey. It’s about reaching, not achieving.

  • Meaning – to get a black belt is not nearly as important as being one.
  • And to win a championship is not nearly as important as being a champion.

Get it?

That’s why the Eastern martial arts have the suffix “-do” attached to them (i.e. Judo, Kendo, Aikido, Karatedo etc.). Do literally means “path”, or “way”.

But of course, this is not a literal pathway. It’s a spiritual one.

A constant journey of self-discovery.

Progression over perfection.

2. Learning by Asking vs. Learning by Doing

In the West, we love asking questions.

Often we want the answer before we even know the question!

In the East, it’s the total opposite…

Typically, a Western student wants to know “what, why, how” before attempting an exercise. Otherwise they don’t see a reason for doing it, because they don’t know the goal (see previous point).

But the Eastern student is encouraged to find the answers by practicing.

The role of a Sensei is actually not to answer questions, but to aid self-discovery.

Again, it goes back to my previous point of being process oriented.

Learning in the East happens through the act of doing. The kinaesthetic sensation of practicing (versus the intellectual pursuit of questioning) leads to the answers being physically manifested in the flesh.

A Sensei can literally make you practice the same technique for hours before you finally “get it”.

That’s why the technical level is so high in the East.

Practice pays off.

3. Capitalism vs. Culture

Finally, let’s talk money…

In the East, a dojo is not run like a company. Why? Because martial arts are part of their cultural identity. It’s a life philosophy.

In the West however, many people offer Karate like any other service or product.

They call their students “customers”. They call dojo visitors “prospects”. They call themselves “CEO”. They don’t award belts, they sell them. They have binding contracts.

The list goes on…

I call these places McDojos.

In the East, this concept is strange. That’s why a Sensei usually has a side job (i.e. taxi driver, cook, janitor, school teacher), because the idea of monetizing their Karate expertise is unconceivable.

It’s a way of life – not a business.



Do you practice Eastern or Western Karate?

Personally, I believe in combining the best of both worlds.

Here’s how:

1. Set GOALS based on DOING, instead of ACHIEVING. For example; “I want to try my Karate skills in a MMA fight” (not: “I want to win a MMA fight”). This allows you to stay motivated, have ambitious goals and enjoy the journey too.

2. PRACTICE deeply, but with an internal dialogue of QUESTIONING yourself (i.e. “what happens if I do like this or that”) to keep evolving. This allows you to discover the techniques, movement patterns and training methods that suit you best as an individual.

3. Always prioritize PURPOSE over PROFIT. It’s fine to make money, your Sensei needs food on the table too. But do it with INTEGRITY. For example, a big “McDojo” conference recently offered me thousands of dollars to be their opening speaker. I said no, because it didn’t vibe with my values. Legacy over currency.

At the end of the day, there’s no right or wrong way to do Karate.

It’s simply a matter of what works best for you! 🙂

That’s the Karate Nerd way.

Good luck!

Anthony Wagambie tells his family’s long ANZAC story in a few paragraphs

As we celebrated ANZAC day, I along with other senior RPNGC officers from my command attended the Dawn service at Lae War Cemetery.

I take my hat off, with pride for what these young men did for us. I heard the speeches, yes, it makes you realise the sacrifices that were made.

But then again, I would also like to pay tribute to all our forefathers, Papua New Guinean men, who fought alongside the Allied forces who came to this great land, to stop the Japanese advance.

Both my Grandfathers fought in this War.

After the War ended, they were both enlisted as members of the Royal Papua New Guinea Constabulary and served until they retired.

My Mothers father: Late Senior Sergeant Paul Saun of Yambun village, Ambunti, East Sepik, settled, passed away and laid to rest at my late Grandmothers village, Sarang number 2, Sumkar, Madang Province.

My Father’s father: Late First Constable Steven Wagambie of Ambukanjai, Yangoru, East Sepik, settled, passed away and laid to rest at my late Grandmothers village, Hawain village, Wewak East Sepik Province.

I never met my paternal Grandfather, late Steven Wagambie. He passed away about two years before I was born.

My maternal Grandfather late Paul Saun, yes, I have a lot of childhood memories with him, which I still cherish today.

My father, (retired Police Commissioner Anton Wagambie Snr) and my late Grandfather Paul Saun used to tell me stories of what they (PNG Soldiers) went through during War Two.

My Grand Father late Steven Wagambie was recruited from East New Britain, where he was a labourer at Rapopo Plantation.

He along with other able bodied men, were taught how to load and fire a gun, then sent to the front line. The rest was natural instinct.

He (Steven Wagambie) served at Buna/ Gona along the Kokoda trail.

My late Grandfather Paul Saun went through the War in the Sepiks.

Papua New Guinean soldiers were the most fearless warriors. They did reconnaissance missions and fought the enemy head on.

They could infiltrate enemy territory and carry out jungle warfare. The jungle was their home.

I pay tribute to all of our Bubus who did what they had to do, for us to be what we are today.

Little has been said on what they had contributed.

This is my story, one of many that other families have of their Father, Grandfather or relative who fought or contributed one way or the other in the War that shaped Nations.

What we need in our country is National pride. A War Museum dedicated to our servicemen would be one way in doing that.

Our Leaders at all levels need to know our History well, and stay focused in Nation building.

Not only them but everyone. Respect each other and do what is best for our country.


God Bless your souls our Heros.

(Photo: Late Steven Wagambie at the Sydney Cricket grounds just after the War had ended. Seated second from left. )