Comments

This is great work! I am really glad that Michele has brought to light one of the inherent issues that affect the urban residents of our national capital as well as other centers in Papua New Guinea. Eviction is a big concern for many families in Papua New Guinea who are currently trying to settle into urban centers as their second home from their traditional indigenous settings such as villages. Rural to urban migration is not a new thing, people have been moving from villages to towns looking for employment or access to basic services such as health and education which are not adequately provided at the villages. So the rise in informal settlements in cities or towns is a result of this shift of people migration, or because of the high cost of owning a home as Michelle has raised or because of one very important thing that I see lacking is no proper urban and city settlement planning process in place. The growth in urban and city settlements (both formal and informal) is not a bad thing. It is a sign of growth and development, as more people live and interact they increase the dynamics of supply and demands of the consumptions of goods and services and increase economic activities as a result. But one thing that seems to lack in this picture is the ability of the government to keep track and monitor this reality, both at the policy and the organizational level. I mean there should be some sort of formal systems in place to settle in towns and cities. Traditionally, Papua New Guineans have very strong landownership and identification systems. People use certain marks (such as trees or special plants) to define and identify their lands. You can not just go and grab land that is marked and owned by another person. Applying this to the current rise in informal settlements in Port Moresby, I think there is much work to be done to define State Land Boundaries and Traditional Land Boundaries as well as private ownership. Informal settlements are increasing because they are allowed to do so or there are no appropriate settlement schemes to accommodate the shift in the increasingly urban and cities population and its settlements. This is not to say that PNG Government has turned a blind eye to this concerns, but there have been some developments made with its Urbanization Policy: https://www.researchgate.net/publication/268689115_National_Urbanisation_Policy_for_Papua_New_Guinea_2010-2030 This is a great step forward to address growth in urban settlement (formal & informal) and the major issue that affects it which is the eviction process. What is needed is the political will and commitment to see this policy to be realized. The growth and in urban settlement (both formal and informal) is an effect of societal change and development and we can not let people suffer further displacements through harsh eviction exercises that usually cause families to lose their homes and properties that were constructed in several years and values quite a lot of monies.
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The striking similarities of the underlying factors described in the article to other PICs is scary. You just hope it’s doesn’t become the Jasmine Revolution of the Pacific.
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Very interesting article and this is exactly the root of all this mishap in the Solomon Islands. Similar with GoK (Kiribati) but we are so damped respectful to our elders and leaders, and culturally grown up in the so-called"minding our own business character"that corruption is so rife.
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https://yashinominews.hatenablog.com/entry/2021/11/26/081626 Great article. Translated in Japanese.   It makes me think about the boundary between self-determination and self-implosion.
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Thank you for your feedback. Your experience/observation is vital in informing current and future research on corruption. Understanding context is important for any anti-corruption reform to work effectively in PNG.
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As professor van Donge indicated the demands were different at each university. UPNG's location in the capital means student mobilization there can be a direct threat to a government's hold on power. The repeal of the judicial conduct act in 2012 is meaningful and confirmed the students' view of themselves as future leaders and saviors of PNG democracy. At the PNGUoT, in 2012, 2013 and 2014 the demands were for an efficient, accountable and transparent university administration. The foreign Vice-Chancellor was seen as pushing this agenda, and consequently the O'Neill government was asked to allow him to enter the country again. When the O'Neill government on 8 June 2016 showed it was willing to use lethal force against the student, the Student Representative Councils were suspended indefinitely, and the students' voice was silenced. For a while.
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It seem to me that corruption is so wide-spread and systemic, that the distinction between us (the honest ones) and them (the corrupt politicians or civil servants) is rather meaningless. Any sign of effort to take some responsibility by regular citizens? Good luck with your PhD!
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Exactly, the riot was a time bomb just waiting to explode. Now that it did where do we go from here how do we pick up the pieces?
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I think the high regard accorded to him by his people is non earned, rather imbued by misleading knowledge and information crafted for the particular cause.
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