P.N.G. Gossip Newsletter - 22 Feb 2002

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PNG Gossip Newsletter Meri Milne Bay

Welcome to the Papua New Guinea Gossip - 22 Feb 2002. A very special welcome is extended to any new readers. If you have comments or suggestions to make then please e-mail them to giaman@png-gossip.com

Articles for this newsletter

To send a message for submission to the PNG Gossip Newsletter -- please e-mail your contribution to pngnews.queue@png-gossip.com

Remember that this mailing list is mainly meant 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, is currently worth somewhere around 25 - 26 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 http://www.michie.net/pnginfo/moni.html

For those who are not so familiar with the geography of Papua New Guinea I suggest taking a look http://maps.expedia.com 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. http://www.michie.net/pnginfo/pom-map.html

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

Neo Melanesian

"Pidgin English"
kiau - egg
sem - embarrassment
olgeta - whole
rausim - evict
birua - enemy
kalabus - jail, goal
kago - cargo
bilong - belong
nogut - no good, evil
moni - money
misus kwin - queen
prai minista - prime minster
polis - police
polisman - policeman

Web Sites

Communication related companies

PACOM grew from a requirement of its parent company to have good reliable communications. From these first steps PACOM have gone from strength to strength. They can even boast of having a Precision Measurement Equipment Laboratory (PMEL/NATA) Calibration centre.

Telikom Privatisation

Any truth in the rumour that one of the major computer companies in PNG are looking at making a bid to by Telikom from the government? I hear that Cisco is rubbing their hands together and voice over IP may become an everyday reality.


The Commission of Enquiry into the National Provident Fund is set to close public hearings today (22 Feb 2002).


The United Church bishop of Mendi has threatened to burn down all church property in Mendi if the warring villagers from Unjamap and Wogia do not stop fighting and accept peace. The bishop said the average lifespan for a PNG person is only 60 years and that the warring clans should enjoy life while they could rather than fighting.

West New Britain

Heavy rain has hit the province of West New Britain. Several bridges have been reported as being washed away.

Aussie Rules Football

The PNG Australian Rules football team- the Mosquitoes have started training for the International Cup to be held in Melbourne, Australia during August this year. PNG has been pooled with Great Britain, Denmark and other European countries.


A local meat cannery in Madang has expressed an interest in canning mushrooms grown in the Lufa area of the Eastern Highlands Province. It is hoped that some of the varieties being trialled would be suitable for canning as either whole or button mushrooms.

Japan Flights

Air Niugini has announced that it would commence weekly direct service to Tokyo on April 20, this year. It is hoped that the country's marine related industries will be able to utilise the services to export quality seafood directly to Japan's largest city.

Give-away Houses

A scheme endorsed by the current PDM government way back in 1992 may almost be ready to give away low covenant houses to the occupiers. Two schemes under National Housing Commission control are the give-away scheme and the government sell-off scheme.

Lost Mail

Surface / sea mail from as far back as 1998 has been found sitting in a warehouse gathering dust rather than being delivered to customers. The courts declared the Post Office insolvent in 1999. The interim liquidator has said that he is keen to find out about any other mail that may be sitting around the country waiting to be delivered.

Blood Bank

The Lae Blood Bank and Coca Cola have come up with a promotional idea in an attempt to get people to donate blood. Coca Cola have donated 100 watches to be given to the first 100 people to donate blood at the Angau Memorial Hospital Blood Bank. Staff from Coca Cola have also been encouraged to give blood.

Morobe Province

AusAID has funded K6 million towards a road to join Bukawa to Lae. A ground breaking ceremony was held near the Busu Bridge.

New Ireland

Ian Ling Stuckey has announced that he will e contesting the New Ireland regional seat as a Pangu candidate. He will run against the existing governor, Paul Tohian, and possibly ex-prime minister Sir Julius Chan. Sir Julius's son Byron will be contesting the seat that his father held for nearly 30 years before being voted out.

Madang Hospital

A new chief executive officer has been appointed to head the Modilon General Hospital in Madang. The Health Minister Tommy Tomscoll has appointed Dr Thomas Vinit, a medical doctor, to the post.

Big Rooster

The Big Rooster fried chicken outlets are now offering breakfast to customers visiting from 7am to 10 am 7 days a week. For the first time customers will be offered Pancakes and maple syrup, bacon and egg muffins and hash browns. For those not familiar with PNG - PNG is a KFC and McDonalds free zone. Yep, one of the few places in the world where they have not even made an attempt to make an inroad.

School Uniforms

Along with school fees another high cost item for parents to worry about is school uniforms. Uniforms are sold in the shops for prices as high as K35 or K50 for a set which is too much for the average person living in a settlement especially by the time the price of a pair of shoes is added in.

Airport Fees

The Port Moresby Chamber of Commerce has made a request to the Secretary for OCA to come out and explain what has happened to the funds that departing international passengers have paid to OCA. Rumours suggest that most of the money has been used to fence the OCA Training College rather than pay to have the x-ray scanning equipment fixed. Each passenger has paid K30 and a total in excess of K1 million has been collected.


The following page is worth a mention. Please take a look at some real news items from Papua New Guinea.
PNG Independent - Newspaper - I fully recommend their Beehive column for a good source of PNG Gossip.

Defence Force

The former chairman of the Defence Force Retirement Benefit Fund has admitted that he signed important documents without reading them. The General Manager has also admitted the same thing.


The media has declared war on corruption in PNG. Several organisations have advertised contact information so that if you see or hear of corrupt people or activities you can have a place to report them.

Transparency International (PNG)
PO Box 591, Port Moresby
Phone 320 2182 Fax 320 2189
email tipng@daltron.com.pg
web http://www.transparencypng.org.pg

Ombudsman Commission of PNG
PO Box 852 Boroko
Ph 325 9955 Fax 320 9220
email ombudspng@datec.com.pg

Media Council of PNG
PO Box 344 Boroko
Phone 320 1994 Fax 320 1956
email pngcorruption@hotmail.com

Chevron Texaco

Mr. Isikeli Taureka has been appointed by Chevron Texaco's to be the managing director for Thailand, based in Bangkok, with additional responsibility for Cambodia and Vietnam. Mr. Taureka has had 15 years banking experience as well as being a former managing director of Post and Telecom.

MTS Discoverer

The Melanesian Tourist Services Discoverer will be cruising on the following schedule for the next few months of the year. This is what has appeared in the newspaper advertisements but it would appear that there is a mistake in the schedule so please check the website at http://www.meltours.com or contact MTS via email at mts@meltours.com. The schedule will also change if sufficient numbers are not received for the various cruises.


It has been reported that there are 3 million people eligible for work within PNG and only 270,000 of these have work in the formal sector. The unemployed rely on subsistence farming and their relatives and "wantoks" or the "wantok system" which has many good and many bad points. A wantok is literally a person who speaks the same language as you and with over 800 plus languages and no unemployment benefits in PNG some people might only have a handful of wantok's clambering after their hard earned Kina each fortnight.

The positive side of the wantok system provides hardship alleviation whilst the negative side sees it undermine the economic advancement of entire kinship groups and retards progress towards escaping temporary poverty because it adversely impacts on a household's income.


Some of the 800 plus languages spoken in PNG are under threat of becoming extinct. The Summer Institute of Linguistics has reported that at least nine languages have been lost since 1950. Five more languages have less than five speakers remaining. The major problem appears to be the widespread use of Pidgin. http://www.sil.org or http://www.sil.org.pg

Languages of PNG

The National or official languages of PNG are Hiri Motu, Tok Pisin and English.

The number of languages listed for Papua New Guinea is 832. Of those, 823 are living languages and nine are considered to be extinct.

For information on the languages a visit to http://www.sultry.arts.usyd.edu.au/ling/research/papuan2.html will start you off in the right direction. Another interesting article is located at http://www.krysstal.com/langfams.html. It deals with language families and mentions the Rotokas language - Rotokas is spoken in Papua New Guinea on the Island of Bougainville by approximately 4,300 people and it has the fewest sounds of any language, 11 (compared to the 44 or so of standard English). These 11 are made up of five vowels and six consonants: A, E, I, O, U, B, G, K, P, R, T. - can you imagine that - a language with only 11 sounds. Six of those are used in the name of the language.

It has been reported that PNG has one language for every 900 square kilometres of the country or roughly one language for every 350 square miles for those readers who don't use the metric system.

Admiral Yamamoto

Forty Japanese tourists have recently visited Bougainville to visit Admiral Yamamoto's wartime plane wreck. Admiral Yamamoto was a key commander of the Japanese during the Second World War. His plane was shot down at Buin during the war.

US Soldiers

The remains of 14 World War Two soldiers found near Kunukio village in Morobe province were flown out on a US C5 aircraft recently. The remains, from two B-24 bomber crash sites, are being flown to the US Army Central Identification Laboratory at Hickam Air Force base in Hawaii in a bid to identify them.

US Ambassador

The US ambassador to PNG has spent two days in the Morobe visiting conservation projects at Kamiali, Labibia village on the south coast of the province. The ambassador was also able to visit the wreck of a US World War Two bomber.

Internet Service Providers

Computer Companies in PNG

Stationery Suppliers

Surfing Association

The PNG surfing Association has received a donation of K10,000 from the Minister for Culture and Tourism. The money will be used to help generate more funds for the association. The association has said that there are plans to hold a PNG International Surf Classic early next year.

Mount Hagen

The Wenta and Anda landowners of Mt Hagen have stopped all classes at the Mt Hagen Technical College. The school has failed to respond to demands by the villagers sent out over 14 days ago. The villagers were awarded a K850,000 land title claim but the award has been withheld.

Landowners of the nearby Mount Hagen Secondary School have given that school a reprieve until the end of term one over a land compensation claim.


Here is a request from a an anthropologist in the Netherlands who is doing research on tattooing within ancient cultures. So far the person has been able to study more than 200 cultures (read tribes) that practised the art of tattooing. They are looking for photographic material and drawings to substantiate their findings. Any material on tattooing of cultures is really welcome.

Can anybody help this person or direct them to someone who can?

Please contact M. Hesselt - email: hesselt@hotmail.com

NCD Saga

The court has ruled that the new National Capital District Commission laws are valid and constitutional. This means that Bill Skate and Philip Taku have no valid claim to run City Hall. It is hoped that the running of city hall will now settle down and much needed services will be able to be restored.


The flying kangaroo had another unexpected visit to PNG when the Air Niugini Air Bus was delayed in Singapore due to some minor problem with the aircraft. The Boeing 767 was used to ferry Air Niugini passengers between PNG and Australia. The Air Niugini Airbus arrived 1`2 hours later than scheduled in time to do the flight too Manila.

Financial Institutions

PNG media related sites

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-- THE END --

Lisa, in Melbourne Australia has said that the for East New Britain / Kuanua the words should be "i par" rather than "i tar". Are there any other Tolai's out there who can set me straight? I am leaning towarsd what Lisa has written below.

Here is what Lisa has told me...
YESSSS! I can speak my language with 95% fluency and comprehend it 100% thankyou very much! You can say 'i tar par' meaning 'its already finished but 'i tar' is an incomplete phrase that literally means 'its already.....', i.e. tar means 'already', i means 'its' , par means 'finished/end'

The following list for "the end" has come from Liz at ITS, UniTech, Lae.

If you can add to this list then please send email to PNG-News@png-gossip.com

Created 22 Feb 2002
Updated 22 Feb 2002
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©2002 - 2009 Gia Mann