A petition to demand that the PNG Gov addresses violence against women

Sign the petition:  Enough was enough long ago: when the violence is extended to include little girls of six-years-old being tortured by groups of men, we cannot let this continue and call ourselves human.

 

She is six years old – accused of ‘sanguma, burned with hot irons by groups of adult men

“We the Papua New Guinea Community and the International Community are united in this call to action. We demand the PNG Government takes immediate and sustained action to prevent and protect women and children from torture, murder and all acts of violence and human rights abuses.

The latest victim is just six (6) years old. Last week in PNG, in an act of extreme depravity, a group of men burned her with hot metal to persuade her to confess to practising witchcraft – she was lucky, she was rescued before she was murdered.

Not so lucky was her mother Kepari Leniata, a name you may remember. Five years ago, a group of vengeful men tortured this young mother; including unspeakable acts of sexual violence. When they had finished torturing Kepari, they threw her on a pile of tyres and burned her alive. Watched by a crowd with camera phones; no one helped her. Her known assailants were never brought to justice and, since then, the extreme violence against women in PNG has only escalated with perpetrators rarely, if ever, prosecuted.

In PNG, violence against women is a low‐risk, and largely tolerated crime. Will PNG now extend its tolerance to the torture of a child? The PNG government responds to each new atrocity against females (and they are sustained and many) with another piece of legislation that’s never used or the adoption of a combatting strategy never implemented.

THE LAW DEMANDS THESE CRIMINALS BE BROUGHT TO JUSTICE – YET THEY NEVER ARE. THIS HAS TO CHANGE.

In 2018, PNG will host APEC. Australia is providing security and other aid for the meeting – with PNG just over 3 kilometres from Australia at its closest point, can Australia afford to ignore the atrocities against women and now children right on their doorstep and maintain ‘business as usual’? Can the other APEC countries?

WHAT CAN YOU DO? Please sign our petition – let the PNG government know that when women and children are allowed to be tortured and burned alive with impunity, it is NOT business as usual – it’s a national emergency.”

  • We call on the PNG Government to immediately act upon the Family Protection Act and the Lukautim Pikinini Act to arrest and prosecute the perpetrators of the recent torture of the young girl from Enga Province.
  • We call upon the PNG Government to increase funding to support the Taskforce against sorcery accusations and gendered based violence.
  • We call upon the PNG Government to provide increased funding to support civil groups addressing Accusation Based Violence and Gendered Based Violence in PNG society.

We, the undersigned demand immediate action from the PNG government to prevent and protect women and children from torture, murder and all acts of violence and human rights abuses.”

Click here to sign.


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Somare’s Singapore sling leaves Koim with a hang-over

By PNG Echo

The Grand Chief - irrevocably implicated
The Grand Chief – irrevocably implicated

The recent revelation that PNG’s former Prime Minister, Sir Michael Somare, was named in a Singapore criminal prosecution as a recipient of $US784, 000.00 (K2, 540,000.00) has exposed Sam Koim’s position as a so-called anti-corruption fighter in PNG, as fundamentally compromised.

Since Task Force sweep was decommissioned by the NEC, Koim has been kept afloat by unknown private sources.

Is it Somare himself, or Somare’s political allies who are providing this funding?

It’s really time Koim came clean with the people of PNG about who is funding his operations.  If Koim is, in fact funded by Somare or Somare’s political allies, this may explain Koim’s failure to prosecute or pursue Somare for this Singapore sling, wouldn’t it?

It might also suggest that the purpose of Koim’s relentless and well-funded attempts to remove O’Neill from his office as Prime Minister, is to install Koim’s pro-Somare benefactors in office, to protect him from prosecution for this crime?

Somare’s involvement in this scam, and the evidence required to conclusively prove it was provided to Sam Koim at the beginning of 2013, and Koim himself has publicly stated that he undertook some sort of official investigation . He declined to comment to the ABC reporter on whether or not Sir Michael had been interviewed by the Task Force.

The prosecution in Singapore was commenced in 2012, and Koim was provided with the evidence in 2013. Why has it taken so long for Koim to act in this matter? Has he even undertaken that basic, fundamental step of interviewing Somare in the investigation process?

The famous crying 'selfie' - are crocodile tears a fitting tribute
The famous crying ‘selfie’ – are crocodile tears a fitting tribute

According to Koim, he was unable to institute any prosecution in this matter because he was “defunded” by the O’Neill government. Again, given his pursuit of the current Prime Minister, Peter O’Neill through the courts of PNG since 2014, this is also hard to accept.

He seems to have garnered sufficient funds to maintain his home, his office and his own sustenance. He had sufficient funds available to illegally engage an expensive team of international and local lawyers, including Greg Egan, and Terry Lambert from Brisbane.

He had sufficient funds to orchestrate the unsuccessful prosecution of the Attorney General, a Supreme Court Judge, and several Police Commissioners, and anyone else who stood in the way of his contrived attack on the Prime Minister.

So Koim had no trouble financing these prosecutions, all of which failed. At best, they wasted precious resources (wherever they may have come from) which could have been more successfully spent prosecuting Somare.

Koim’s antics since 2013 have all been financed by persons unknown, bent on seeing O’Neill stood aside from the office of Prime Minister, at all costs, including the corruption of the prosecutorial and judicial systems.

Who would benefit from such a thing? Why, Somare and his political supporters would, of course.  It’s time Koim revealed who is paying him.

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Sir Michael Somare: The money trail

By PNG Echo.
Sir Michael Somare claims he has never received illegal payments. Oh, really?

The Community Colleges rort – and the proof of the pudding

On 16th August 2010, the then Prime Minister of Papua New Guinea, Sir Michael Somare, received the sum of $US280,000 into his personal account (#0374026963) at the Scott’s Mall branch of the Standard Chartered Bank in Singapore, drawn on the account of M/S Questzone Offshore Limited (“Questzone”). See below.

Somare Cheque 2Then, on the 1st September 2010, Somare received a further $US 280,000 into the same personal account from the same drawer. See below.

Somare Cheque 3Finally, on the 12th November 2010, he also received a further sum of $US 224,000 from the same drawer into his personal account. See Below

Somare Cheque 1Each of these annexures have the full tracing details endorsed by the bank on the copies produced here, so there can be no denying the funds were received by him.

I am told Sir Michael spent some of the money paying the builder of his Wewak residence and the rest has been frozen in this account (I believe the residual is around $300,000)

The enormity of this crime cannot be underestimated. I am reliably informed that it is the most serious “white collar” crime on the statute books and carries a term of imprisonment of 25 years in prison.

Furthermore, under oath before a Leadership Tribunal in 2010, Somare was required to disclose all of his bank accounts and other assets. He failed to disclose his Singapore account, and consequently perjured himself.

This account was not disclosed in his Leadership returns for 2010 or any other year subsequently, which constitutes a serial breaching of the Leadership Code.

Somare also failed to disclose this income to the Internal Revenue Commission, which is a fraud.

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Tall tales and true: Strategically yours

By Susan Merrell

I’m a journalist, people tell me things – lots of things. The information ranges from the factual to the fanciful and everything in between.
Some want to see justice done through the media, others just want their story told, while some try to use the media, through me, for mischievous purposes and for all sorts of reasons, including to make me appear foolish and gullible by publishing their lies.
So I’m cautious, but just occasionally a story is run past me that is so fantastical, so amusing that it would be a travesty not to share it.
However, I must caution the reader that the source of my source is “talk amongst politicians” meaning not even his sources are sure – so let’s call it a fairy tale for you to enjoy with your sandwich over lunch.

Who are these PNGeans? Paolo and Francesca, Bill and Hillary or ......
Who are these PNGeans? Paolo and Francesca, Bill and Hillary or ……

Once upon a time there were two high-ranking government officials who wanted to get married (let’s call them Bill and Hillary for ease of identification).

Well… actually… Bill desired the marriage, I’m not so sure about Hillary. So while I’m not saying for certain that she was less enthusiastic, she did seem to have little say in the process.

For both Bill and Hillary were married to other people, in fact, Bill had many wives. What’s more, while I’d like to tell you readers that they had fallen madly in love, (everyone loves a love story) – that’s not certain either.

Given their high-ranking positions it could have been convenience that was driving their desire (or rather – his desire) or it could be that the union would prove politically strategic for them both – a bit like the marital alliances that were forged in Europe long ago – I’m thinking here Louis the Sixteenth of France and Marie Antoinette daughter of the Holy Roman Emperor – (Yes, yes, I know, perhaps not the greatest example – I mean, didn’t that all end in tears? But that may just be how our story ends too.)

The marital status of Bill was no obstacle to their union – not in PNG – but Hillary’s could have been a real sticking point to the intended nuptials had it not been for the fact that in PNG high-ranking government officials have ‘means’ and, in PNG, women can be bought (or so it seems if you believe the “talk amongst politicians.”)

If you see a man with a brand new one of these in the company of a beautiful girl splashing around bundles of cash - please let me know
If you see a man with a brand new one of these in the company of a beautiful girl splashing around bundles of cash – please let me know

And that’s what purportedly happened: Hillary was traded by her then lawful husband for “…K2 million, a Toyota fully kitted 10 seater Landcruiser and a young beautiful lass from Central.”

So with everyone happy with their lot (I suppose)– the marriage took place between Bill and Hillary.

I’m sensing you are sceptical – I mean what did the “young beautiful lass from Central have to say about this and wouldn’t Hillary and her husband need to divorce first? – or is this just my western ethos spoiling a good story – because it gets better.

It seems that the union was indeed strategic and Bill is now using Hillary’s bank account to cover up questionable payments to even more government officials (in the six-figure range) in order to effect Bill’s (and perhaps Hillary’s too) strategic plans – whatever they be.

Purportedly these illegal payments have been made to the most unlikely of suspects. Social media darlings even – or so the legend goes.

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Courts court confusion: PMs arrest warrant.

By PNG Echo.

Chief Magistrate Ms. Nerrie Eliakim - dismissed the application
Chief Magistrate Ms. Nerrie Eliakim – dismissed the application

Chief Magistrate, Ms. Nerrie Eliakim, yesterday (July 4, 2014), dismissed an application from police to set aside an arrest warrant for the Prime Minister of Papua New Guinea, Peter O’Neill, in the Committal Court, Waigani.

The decision of Ms Eliakim who is believed to be close to former Justice Minister and Attorney General, Kerenga Kua, will seriously undermine the authority of the newly-appointed Police Commissioner, Geoffrey Vaki and police powers.

Stated under S197 (2) of the Constitution is that the functions of the police are not only to lay and prosecute charges but also withdraw them

As it now stands, the Police Commissioner has lost his authority.

How can a police force operate effectively while subordinates are being encouraged by the courts to ignore directives from their Commissioner, who wants the arrest warrant withdrawn?

Under the circumstances, it is to be expected that the Police Commissioner will appeal the decision.

Meanwhile, in the Supreme Court, lawyers for the Prime Minister have lodged an urgent appeal against the decision of the National Court whereby the Prime Minister’s application for a stay of the arrest warrant was also dismissed.

The decision being appealed was contraindicated when all parties agreed to the stay – the court didn’t.

Police Commissioner Geoffrey Vaki,  will he appeal the decision?
Police Commissioner Geoffrey Vaki, will he appeal the decision?

However, in handing down the decision Judge Kariko also affirmed the Police Commissioner’s authority over the police force – which Magistrate Eliakim’s subsequent ruling in a lower court has undermined.

The Supreme Court has adjourned the PMs appeal until the end of next week while Ms Eliakim’s written decision will be made available on Monday 7 July…and look out for the anticipated appeal of the Police Commissioner who seems in no hurry to arrest the Prime Minister.

In the meantime the police force must be in complete disarray with no one knowing from whom they take orders.

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All of the 77 evil and corrupt SABL’s are cancelled.

By PNG Echo

Today will go down in the annals of PNG history as a day when something insightful, far-reaching and concrete was finally done about corrupt practises in PNG.  But this is not my story to tell – it belongs to all those that have fought tooth and nail to save the environment.  So over to you Tiffany Twivey-Nonggorr who writes:

Tiffany Twivey-Nonggorr, lawyer and eco-warrior
Tiffany Twivey-Nonggorr, lawyer and eco-warrior

You want to talk about corruption fighting?  Well this government has just killed the biggest corrupt dealing of the past 10 years.

During the Somare government, a heinous scheme of issuing SABLs over large forest areas was created under the guise of Agri/forestry leases.

The Forests Act was amended under the then Forest Minister Belden Namah to allow for large scale clear-felling permits that had never been allowed for over 50 hectares before.  SABLs were then given over hundreds of thousands of hectares of forest under the pretext that the trees needed to be clear felled so that agricultural projects could start.

Belden Namah the Minister (and logger) who altered the laws to allow for the evil SABLs and was first to take advantage in Bewani
Belden Namah the Minister (and logger) who altered the laws to allow for the evil SABLs and was first to take advantage in Bewani

These 99-year special purpose agricultural business leases were given over 5 million hectares of land in PNG amounting to the alienation of 10% of all of the land in PNG.

The leases meant that the peoples customary rights to the land were suspended for 99 years.

Up until these leases were issued, only 3% of the land in PNG had been alienated (taken away) since Independence from the customary landowners and 97% was still held customarily by landowners but within a few years 10% went.

That was the food and social security if 100s of thousands of people just taken from them.

Literally 100s of thousands of hectares of old-growth forest was cleared – with clearance permits obtained for shonky “agricultural projects”.

Alois Jerewai - the recalcitrant SABL Commission
Alois Jerewai – the recalcitrant SABL Commissioner

A commission of inquiry into these SABLs was started – yes there were issues with the reports as only two of the three commissioners submitted their reports [ Editor’s note: Alois Jerewai was the Commissioner who did not table his report – he later went on to become a legal representative of the man who enabled these leases – Belden Namah] – so a ministerial committee was established to pool the findings of the commissioners.

Their work is done.

NEC yesterday declared all of these disgraceful SABL leases cancelled.  They are gone. Continue reading All of the 77 evil and corrupt SABL’s are cancelled.

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The week that was ending 20 January 2014. The day the circus came to town

By PNG Echo

CQ-020-Circus-Big-TopMore sideshows have been added this week to ‘Belden’s Big Top’, the (quasi) anti corruption circus that opened early in January with Belden performing the ‘Arrest the Prime Minister Dance’.

2013-09-05 09.16.06This clumsy dance was clearly self-choreographed, with Belden soon stumbling on his own amateur dance steps as the professionals (lawyers) proved to the arbitrators (courts) that the dance was unworthy.

And although, Blind Freddy could see his footprints all over the choreography, Belden chose to hide his light under a bushel and attributed it to four of PNGs finest.

It was a poison chalice that he’d handed the police officers (although it’s alleged that the pot was sweetened) because the four were suspended from their duties for disobeying orders.  (They had been told not to dance with the devil.)

circusAs I write, a major new attraction is opening in the courts of Waigani where Belden will give a benefit performance for the four disgraced police officers while trying to avoid being hit by the flying daggers of the knife thrower with deadly aim, Continue reading The week that was ending 20 January 2014. The day the circus came to town

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Hallo 2014 – Political stunts and more violence against women.

By PNG Echo.

PNG Echo is officially back to work after the Christmas break.

With so many things of import occurring in early January, it proved a bit of a ‘Clayton’s’ break.  What happened to the usual practice of Papua New Guniean MPs exiting the country for the summer break and only returning in February for the first sitting of  parliament (and sometimes not even that soon)?

Political shenanigns

6a00d83454f2ec69e2016302cb6ac0970d-200pi Early January saw a dangerous political manoeuvre by the Opposition Leader (were the Casinos closed?) as he insisted on arrest warrants, sworn out at the end of 2013 (of which no one was aware), be carried through on Prime Minister Peter O’Neill, Treasurer, Don Polye and Minister for Finance, James Marape.

images-1
Commissioner of Police, Tom Kulunga

The arrest warrants cut across an ongoing investigation into the same matter being carried out by Investigation Task Force Sweep (TFS) and were contrary to the directions of Tom Kulunga, Commissioner of Police.

In fact the arrests were poised to seriously jeopardize the investigation of the TFS by pre-empting their inquiries.  The arrests were ill-conceived and would have been premature had they gone ahead.

They didn’t123468-png-peter-oneill

Continue reading Hallo 2014 – Political stunts and more violence against women.

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Happy New Year

We wish all of our readers a happy, safe, and prosperous 2014

Click here for a live video recording of the Sydney fireworks brought to you by PNG Echo.

IMG_5800IMG_5788

 

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The year that was 2013

images

As the festive season fast approaches, at PNG Echo we would like to leave you with a few reflections and a few ‘thank yous’.

By PNG Echo

 

LiveLeak-dot-com-b72901cc0467-549397_346440755472679_74844379_nWell may we wish everyone a ‘happy new year’ but for many PNGeans, it will be an empty wish.

For happiness and prosperity to be spread wide corruption must stop.  It is taking away PNGeans birthright and will deprive your children of a bright future.

PNG Echo is all about exposing corruption and halting its trajectory (with your help) – and so far, you, the people of Papua New Guinea have been magnificent – we couldn’t have achieved what we have without you…

Continue reading The year that was 2013

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