Understand PNG and You Will Know Why Rudd's Solution Will Not Work

Monday, July 22, 2013

One Nation has serious doubts about Kevin Rudd’s hastily made up PNG Solution. 

"I have worked in PNG most of my life, starting work in PNG in 1973 and still working there now in the resource industry as an interpreter and community affairs officer.

PNG is a third world country with serious law and order problems, chronic unemployment, no public housing, no public welfare system, a very poor and rarely functioning health system, little real policing done, and  a very introverted tribal based attitude to all matters. Outsiders are not welcomed, anywhere, on a permanent basis. Yes fly-in fly-out workers are tolerated as we are not settling there or occupying land. In PNG land ownership is EVERYTHING. It is difficult to relocate a tribe due to, for example a landslide, to another place only two miles away due to tribal differences.

  1. PNG is a strongly Christian nation and do not like Muslims, which most of the boat people are. The fighting resulting from this is inevitable.

  2. There is no public housing in PNG, so Australia would have to build EVERY facility from scratch. Port Moresby is extremely expensive and such a housing project could not be feasible there. Average house price in Moresby is around one million dollars. In the regions the anti-foreigner attitude and lack of law and order would make it very risky, as no-one will give up land to allow it to happen. Any land purchase deal by the Australian government , means nothing. The locals will not recognise it and will attack the workers building there and then the occupants who live there.

  3. There are no jobs available for uneducated  foreigners. It is illegal for a foreigner to work in PNG unless they have a qualification that cannot be sourced locally, and you MUST speak either English or Pidgin. Therefore none of the permanent settlers will EVER be allowed to work. This means the Australian taxer payer will have to support them forever, and PNG is one of the most expensive countries on earth, unless you are a local subsistence farmer, which the boat people cannot ever be.

  4. Why should PNG, a country with massive social issues and tribal fighting between the 750 odd tribal groups, be burdened with a socially engineered “new” population which is totally incompatiable to their own culture? Who are we to do this to them?

  5. Does Australia really want (in the future) a large Muslim population right on our doorstep, only a canoe paddle away?

  6. As the Muslim foreigners in PNG breed and grow in numbers does Australia continue supporting the second generation as well? (PNG cannot and won’t)

  7. As there is no real health system in place, Australia will have to build a hospital everywhere these boat people are settled.  The PNG locals don’t have this themselves, so the newcomers will always be the privileged upper class, creating even more discontent and ill will against them. Should the newcomers be treated better than the locals? Can everyone use the new hospitals, or do locals get turned away?

  8. Due to the lawless nature of PNG society, the Australian taxpayer will have provide 24 hour protection for all the boat people, forever. As Australian police cannot work in PNG except in special circumstances, who will do the protecting? No doubt one of the big American companies who currently makes hundreds of millions at the current detention centres.

  9. The boat people even if granted settlement in PNG will not be able venture outside the camps. The razor wire will be there to keep the locals OUT, not the inmates IN! At least there will be no escapes here, unlike Australia.

  10. To embark on such a project as Rudd proposes would require a 2 to 3 year impact study, at least, and a social mapping study. This is standard practice in PNG for any new project. This requires extensive negotiating with the local people taking into account their tribal beliefs, local taboos, land usage, relations with neighbouring tribes and their attitude to the project. Then there is the issue of employment. The local tribe will have their own structure of clans and sub-clans. This then breaks down into family units. ALL expect equal consideration and job opportunities and if any section or group feels they have been given less than any other, violence is the usual outcome, at which point the negotiations must start again from the beginning. This is why it takes such a long time to do such pre-project awareness campaigns and pre-start negotiations. Rudd went to PNG and thought he had done it in 24 hours.  On top of all this, all land in PNG is always under dispute as to ownership. These disputes have been going on for generations, and is the main reason for the countless tribal fights going on every day somewhere in PNG. Once a deal is eventually struck with a tribe, the neighbouring tribe will dispute the first tribe’ right to negotiate the deal. Another fight starts.

I have worked most of my adult life in PNG and speak the language and work every day with the people. I know for a fact this “solution” is not going to be accepted by 99% of PNG’s population and even the majority of the Members of Parliament will object to it.  Has Rudd actually talked to anyone with any long time PNG experience? All it takes is a change of government in PNG and the deal is scrapped. PNG does not exactly have the most stable government, and it is very robust democracy. PNG does not need and should not have thrust upon it, this horrible “deal”. Australia should not pass the ball on to PNG. We should and must solve our own problems. 

One Nation would solve the boat issue in 24 hours given the chance. We would turn back every single boat, sea worthy or not. Our Navy is capable of doing their job, we would let them do it.

We don’t need to be deciding what to do with these people when they arrive, because we will stop them from arriving."

By Jim Savage 



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