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Barnaby Joyce has finally caved under
pressure and sensationally stepped down as leader of the Nationals
and as Deputy Prime Minister.
After a tumultuous month for the beleaguered politician, Joyce announced his resignation in a dramatic press conference in Armidale this afternoon.
Pressure has been mounting on Joyce ever since it was revealed that he had an affair with his staffer Vikki Campion, who is now his partner. They are now living together and their baby is due in April.
The member for New England confirmed he would remain in the seat but would be moving to the backbench
Can I say right from the start, this is never about me, he said in the press conference. Its about the person in the weather board, something that manifestly expressed what the National Party is about.
Its about the person in many places, their right to transcend through the economic and social stratification of life.
Joyce said it has been an incredible privilege to serve as Deputy Prime Minister of Australia.
It went from bad to worse for Joyce this week. Thursday, he denied claims of sexual harassment against him as spurious and defamatory as he faces fresh questions about an 11-day road trip he undertook in December.
The Deputy PM said there has been a litany of allegations none of which have been sustained.
Might I say right here, any person in any political party always says, the leaking, the backgrounding, all that, it will destroy not only our government, it will destroy any government, he said at the press conference today.
Now, might I say, with the last allegation that was in the paper today, I have asked that be referred to the police. Ive asked for the right of the person whos made the allegation and Ive asked for my right of defence that be referred to the police, he said.
But its quite evident that you cant go to the Despatch Box with issues like that surrounding you.
Joyce said the media attention was completely and utterly unwarranted.
He said he came to the decision to step down following the allegations describing it as the straw that broke the camels back.
Obviously, it was confirmed by the allegations that I read in the paper. I just thought that has to be the straw that breaks the camels back, he said.
Just hours ago, Nine News political reporter Lane Calcutt asked the Deputy PM if he was going anywhere following the sexual harassment complaint.
Lets just do...
2018 is expected to be a pivotal year for
Oil Search, with many activities reaching important milestones, Mr
Botten said when releasing the companys full year results for 2017
today (February 20th, 2018).
The companys net after tax profit rose 236% to $US302.1 million, buoyed by strong oil and gas prices, and record production.
Oil Search reported a net profit after tax of $US302.1 million, 236 per cent higher than the net profit in 2016, Mr Botten said.
Sales revenue benefited from the rise in global oil and gas prices, with the average realised oil and condensate price increasing by 24% to US$55.68/bbl and the average realised LNG and gas price 21% higher, at US$7.67/mmBtu. This more than offset slightly lower sales volumes, driving a 17% increase in total revenue to US$1.45 billion.
Unit production costs remained highly competitive, at US$8.67 per boe, and the Companys operating margin was a healthy 73%. Other operating costs increased from US$131.7 million to US$141.1 million, primarily reflecting the impact of higher sales on royalties, levies and selling expenses as well as a provision for redundant warehouse stock. Depreciation and amortisation charges of US$11.95 per boe were significantly lower than in 2016, reflecting the impact of higher 2P reserves following the recertification of the PNG LNG Project fields.
Speaking about LNG expansion, Mr Botten said: Productive, high level meetings were recently held between Oil Search, ExxonMobil and Total to discuss the results of the downstream development options that were received by the PRL 15 joint venture partners last December.
The partners have reached broad agreement on the preferred development concept, which will be presented to the PNG Government and other PNG LNG and PRL 3 joint venture partners for endorsement. The development concept that will be proposed is likely to comprise the construction of three LNG trains, with total capacity of approximately 8 MTPA.
Two of these trains are likely to be dedicated to Papua LNG, supplied with gas from the Elk-Antelope fields, with an additional expansion train underpinned by gas from the existing PNG LNG fields and the Pnyang field. We expect negotiations on cost sharing arrangements and the principles governing integration to commence shortly, which will enable the completion of downstream and upstream technical studies.
Oil Search expects that discussions with the PNG Government on project gas agreements will commence late in the fir...
By PNG Echo It is, by now, well known that, last weekend, this journalist was refused entry into Papua New Guinea (PNG) by order of the Prime Minister. It was heavy handed, provocative and ultimately an exercise in futility. May I remind the Prime Minister that there have been very successful revolutions enacted remotely the Ayotollah Khomeini effected the Iranian revolution from enforced exile in Paris, for instance. In PNG, political revolution is not called for the government was democratically elected and ought to be free to do its job. Its the fact that this government is not doing that job; that it is falling down badly in some areas of concern affecting the human rights of half its population. The ill-fortune of women in PNG will not change (and it surely must) until there is effective political leadership with a Prime Minister whos committed to the Continue reading The journalist, the Human Rights Commissioner, the Prime Minister and the abuses.
Post Courier | February 23, 2018
The Resource Owners Federation of Papua New Guinea, which has been campaigning for the removal of the industry representatives from the board of the Mineral Resources Authority (MRA), is pleased with the government for finally amending the Mineral Resources Authority Act 2005, to remove the mining industry representatives from the board of the authority. The presence of the mining industry representatives on the board of the MRA had caused the public to distrust the Authority and its decisions, even if those decisions were proper.
MRA is the States regulatory institution, whose function is to administer the mining laws of PNG.
Federation President Jonathan Paraia said it was utterly improper and unlawful for representatives of the industry, who are the subjects of the mining laws to have had a hand in the enforcement of the laws against themselves for the last seventeen years or so. He said their presence has been an impediment to the rule of law being applied impartia...
The Brisbane Broncos team arrived today to a
packed crowd waiting for them at the Jacksons International
Airport, Port Moresby.
They were greeted outside the terminal by die heart fans who waited at the airport for 2-3 hours just to get a glimpse of their favourite players and offcourse the man behind the team Wayne Bennett.
Broncos Captain Alex Glenn was overwhelmed with the reception they received at the airport and he was even surprised to see a placard with his name on it.
As we were coming out, I looked up and there were hundreds of people behind the fence, I saw this small fellow holding an Alex Glenn flag and I was pretty stoked
He said he felt like a rock star walking out of the airport and the atmosphere just gave him that feeling of being an important person.
As soon as we walked out of the doors, we could hear everyone screaming, clapping and the big smile on their faces with hundreds of cameras everywhere, it was a rock star moment
Meanwhile the captain believes it will be a very physical game against the PNG Hunters this Saturday.
I played with the Cook Islands against PNG in the Pacific Test Match and they were very physical and very tough and they played with lots skills, it just not going to be an easy match PNGFM
|PNG PM O'Neill|
Australian mining giant, Newcrest, paying K841,000 to sponsor the APEC CEOs meeting in November tells us all we need to know about who stands to benefit from the APEC pantomime in PNG this year.
It sure as hell is not going to be PNGs 3 million farmers or 7 million customary landholders!
First platinum sponsor for APEC CEOs Summit
Freddy Mou | PNG Loop | February 22, 2018
Seven platinum sponsor spaces are yet to be lled, with nine months remaining for the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) CEOs Summit in November this year.
Newcrest Mining Ltd was the first company to sign an agreement with the APEC Authority in Port Moresby today for the platinum sponsor. ...
No, nothing will change so long as we support corrupt governments by doing NOTHING! Australia & the US support the genocide in West Papua, the Papuans were our allies in WW2 & saved many of our servicemen. Nothing will change unless the corrupt governments are sacked & a better non corrupt governing system is put in place. This will never happen in Australia, but it may happen in other countries.
IMAGE: Map showing new logging roads and tree cover loss in 2017
SOURCE: Global Witness
The Papua New Guinean (PNG) government has disregarded a decision by its Supreme Court and allowed loggers found guilty of flouting PNG law to continue operating, new research by Global Witness reveals. The revelations come as APEC countries meet in Port Moresby this weekend, February 24-25, to discuss measures to tackle illegal logging and the trade in illegal timber. Global Witness is calling on the PNG government, this years APEC host, to show leadership on the issue by following through on past commitments to shut down illegal logging operations.
Hosting the 2018 APEC Summit is a historic moment for PNG, but this risks being overshadowed by land grabbing and deforestation driven by the governments failure to enforce its own laws, said Lela Stanley of Global Witness. The PNG government has been promising for years to crack down on illegal logging but continues to turn a blind eye while its forests are raided by foreign logging interests.
New Global Witness analysis of satellite imagery and export data reveals loggers have recently extended a major forest clearance operation declared illegal by PNGs Supreme Court. The Court ruled in August 2016 that a land lease used as a pretext to clear forest in East Sepik Province was invalid, and that any associated logging and oil palm development was illegal. It found that the logging operation violated the legal rights of indigenous communities to their land and forests by failing to gain their consent.
However, the PNG government failed to stop the logging, and in February 2017 its National Forest Board quietly granted a new forest clearance permit to the Malaysian loggers responsible, allowing them to continue cutting down the same forests. Global Witness findings show that by the time the new permit was issued around 930 km of logging roads had been built and logs valued at roughly US$65 million exported under the illegal operation. In 2017, more than 70 km of new roads were added and at least US$5 million of timber exported under the new permit.
We were elated when the Supreme Court delivered justice to communities that had their land and timber stolen, but our government has taken it away by refusing to stop the logging, said Augustine Mondu, a community activist in PNG. People are suffering as the forests and ri...
PORT MORESBY Papua New Guinea is so politicised that even our simple-minded people are quick to perceive that every decision by any public authority is influenced by politics regardless of its merits.
So too has corruption become so rife in public life in PNG that our people tend to attribute governance decisions to an invisible hand of corruption at play.
Well, unfortunately, such is the state we have come to be in.
Those perceptions have evolved overtime with our unsavoury experiences. Every time decisions on public interest matters are made, we may unwittingly see them as possessing these biases.
We all have our personal prejudices but the one I am talking about is kind of 'national syndrome' of cynicism.
And because we immerse ourselves in such a syndrome, many who are subject of accountability inquiries easily draw out politics and corruption cards to deflect and mask the real issues.
Although these malodorous incidents may cry to high heaven for accountability, the resistance is always ingrained in this syndrome.
It happens everywhere in the world, and I have personally had many experiences to attest to it. Those who are pliable easily fall prey to such perception manipulations. Such manipulators pin our attention to peripheral issues whilst they spin themselves away from the real issues.
Public perception is healthy as it keeps government authorities in check when formal institutions fail.
The unintended consequence, however, is that it can become a source of indecision for those managing and working in public institutions.
Those who fear public perception will never make tough decisions, though the facts may be compelling. Leadership is about decision-making.
I prefer making informed decisions, uncontaminated by private or parochial interests, because that is the best defence against challenge.
NOOSA The annual Business Advantage International (BAI) survey of 100 chief executives in Papua New Guinea has found that the shortage of foreign exchange remains the top problem facing business in the country.
The PNG 100 CEO Survey, conducted each year since 2012, included senior executives from a representative sample of PNGs largest companies across all sectors of the economy.
Each year, the survey asks CEOs to identify the important issues they face and also provide information about anticipated profit levels and expectations for investment and recruitment in the year ahead.
For the third consecutive year, access to foreign exchange was the most significant impediment to business, being nominated by 71% of respondents as a first order issue, up from 60% in 2017.
It is considered a critical issue by 42% of respondents and very important by 29%.
Other issues considered to be critical are lack of government capacity, shortage of expertise and skills, unreliable telecommunications, and security and law and order, although telecommunications and security were said to be much improved from 2017.
However, business leaders remain generally optimistic despite the varied economic conditions. Two-thirds believe profits will rise this year, with less than 10% anticipating lower profits.
Investment and employment intentions are useful indicators of business confidence and the survey found that two-thirds of respondents were planning to increase investment this year, despite subdued economic conditions.
Over half were also planning to increase employee numbers this year.
BAI has been involved in promoting business in PNG and the Pacific since 2005. On 6 and 7 August it will host the PNG Investment Conference in Brisbane.
Amnesty International Report 2017/2018
Indonesia failed to address past human rights violations. The rights to freedom of expression, of peaceful assembly and of association continued to be arbitrarily restricted. Blasphemy provisions were used to imprison those who peacefully exercised their rights to freedom of religion and belief. At least 30 prisoners of conscience remained in detention for peacefully exercising their rights to freedom of expression or of religion and belief. The security forces carried out unlawful killings and used excessive force during protests and security operations. Two men were caned in public in Aceh after being convicted by a local Sharia court of same-sex consensual sexual relations.
Indonesias human rights record was examined in May under the UN UPR process. Although Indonesia accepted 167 out of 225 recommendations, it rejected, among other things, calls to investigate past human rights violations and to repeal blasphemy provisions in laws and regulations. These included several provisions of the Criminal Code and Law No. 1/PNPS/1965, which imposed restrictions on freedoms of expression and of religion and belief. 1
Despite commitments made by the President, Indonesia failed to address past human rights violations. In February, the Administrative Court in the capital, Jakarta, overturned a decision by the Public Information Commission ordering the government to publish a report on the 2004 murder of human rights defender Munir Said Thalib, which reportedly implicated senior intelligence officers. The Court made the decision on the grounds that the current government had not received the report from the previous government. In August, the Supreme Court upheld the Administrative Courts decision.
During the UPR, Indonesia promised that the Attorney General would finalize a criminal investigation into alleged gross human rights violations in Wasior in 2001 and Wamena in 2003, both in Papua region, and forward the case to the Human Rights Court established under Law No. 26/2000. However, this had not happened by the end of the year.
The authorities continued to prosecute those participating in peaceful political activities, particularly in areas with a history of pro-independence movements such as Papua. Prisoner of conscience Oktovianus Warnares remained in detention because he refused to sign a document declaring his allegiance to the state of Indonesia, despite having served two thirds of...
220218BOUGAINVILLE COMMUNITY GOVERNMENT ELECTIONS GO URBAN
By Aloysius Laukai
Work has started to complete the Bougainville Community Government elections with the inclusions of urban areas left when the initial Community Government elections was conducted last year.
The urban areas were left as the Community Government elections did not need a common roll to conduct and to include the urban areas a common roll had to be used.
And to complete the election, the Office of the Bougainville Electoral Commission started this week to update and complete a common roll for urban areas of Buka, Arawa and Buin.
According to the media officer for the Bougainville Electoral Commission, WINTERFORD TOREAS work on updating the common roll started at Sohano island and will cover areas, Buka town,Kubu, Kukul,Ieta, Hahela and Hutjena.
Later they will cover other urban wards in Buin and Arawa before conducting elections in these areas to complete the Bougainville Community Government Election.
220218BOUGAINVILLE TECHNICAL SCHOOL TAKING STUDENTS
By Aloysius Laukai
The Bougainville Technical College, Tinputz is now accepting students for the 2018 academic year.
According to the Deputy Principal of the School, GABRIEL DAVE, Trade Courses the school is offering are WELDING,CAPENTARY,PLUMBING and LIGHT MOTOR VEHICLE MECHANIC.
The school is also offering two non-Trade Courses, BUSINESS STUDIES and TOURISM.
Enrolment days will start on Monday February 26th to Friday 2nd March, 2018.
And orientation week will be between, March 5th to March 9th, 2018.
School fees for 2018 are as follows, Boarding students for Trade Courses will pay K5,462 and for Non Trade Courses the school fees will be K5,462.
Day students will pay K4,554 for Trade courses and K4,505 for Non Trade Courses.
The school requires sixty percent as upfront payment from students before they are accepted into the School.
Sixty percent for Trade courses and boarders are K3,307.20 and for Day students K2732.40.
For Non Trade courses Sixty percent is K3,277.20 for boarders and Day students will pay K2,702.40.
The deputy Principal also said that students with outstanding schools fees will have to complete them too.
Students are also required to go to the School with their beddings and Plates and Cups plus Buckets and Knives and Grass knives.
For more information, you can call the deputy Principal on mobile number 70639199.
220218CONTROL INCOMING PEOPLE SAYS HEROMATE
By Aloysius Laukai
A former senior Public servant in the Bougainville administration, PATRICK HEROMATE is calling on the ABG to make sure they control and monitor the movement of people into communities throughout Bougainville.
He told New Dawn FM in Buka that he was concerned at the influx and movement of people especially outsiders into communities without any reasons.
He said in the past District Managers were on 24 hours on call to monitor such movements to make sure the communities were protected from unscrupulous investors going directly into unsuspecting communities.
MR. HEROMATEs call came after a ship was seen trying to berth in the West Coast area last week.
He said drug dealers and other illegal activities can destroy Bougainville if the Government is not cautious of such activities taking place in the remote areas of Bougainville.
220218POLICE ON ROAD SAFETY
By Aloysius Laukai
The Bougainville Police is concerned at road safety on all Bougainville roads.
Buka Police Station Commander, Senior Sergeant John Popui told New Dawn FM yesterday that Police wants all drivers to make sure their vehicles are roadworthy and registered to be on public roads.
He said Police wants all drivers to make sure that they do not overload their vehicles and also over the speed limits.
The Police Commander said that Bougainville Police are making random checks on all Bougainville roads and drivers will be booked and charged for un-road worthy vehicles and overloaded vehicles.
He said that as the saying goes, prevention is better than cure so it is better to prevent accidents from happening and save lives.
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