Marape calls for policies for a ‘better PNG’ in independence message

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Prime Minister James Marape at Thursday's pre-Independence Day celebration
Prime Minister James Marape at Thursday's pre-Independence Day celebration in Port Moresby when he gave his message to the nation. Image: PNG Post-Courier

PNG Post-Courier

Prime Minister James Marape has reiterated his call for staff of the Department of Prime Minister and National Executive Council to “fully embrace their roles” as policy advisers to the government of Papua New Guinea.

In this week’s address on the eve of the 48th Independence celebrations today, Prime Minister Marape reminded the department’s staff that they must always keep in mind the people of Papua New Guinea whom they had been called to serve.

“As we commemorate our Independence, let us not forget those among us who are less fortunate,” he said.

“It is our responsibility to ensure that government policies are diligently implemented to create a better country for all our citizens, leaving no one behind.”

Prime Minister Marape also highlighted that his government’s policy agenda aligned with the Eight-Point Plan of the Constitution and the Seven Pillars of Vision 2050.

These cover:

  • Human Capital Development;
  • Gender, Youth, and People Empowerment;
  • Wealth Creation;
  • Institutional Development and Service Delivery;
  • Security and International Relations;
  • Environmental Sustainability and Climate Change;
  • Spiritual, Cultural, and Community Development; and
  • Strategic Planning, Integration, and Control.

“These are the aspirations we must work tirelessly to achieve in our lifetime if we want future generations to thrive in a prosperous Papua New Guinea,” he urged.

Acknowledging the relatively short average life expectancy of approximately 72 years in the country, Prime Minister Marape said that it wsas incumbent upon everyone to redouble their efforts.

The Prime Minister also drew attention to the fact that public servants in Papua New Guinea made up less than 2 percent of the total workforce yet consumed about a third of the annual budget.

He called on the staff of the Department of Prime Minister and National Executive Council to not only excel in their roles but to also inspire their colleagues in other line agencies to do the same, ensuring that all Papua New Guineans would receive the service they deserved.

Melanesian-way leadership
In an editorial, the PNG Post-Courier was less rosy reflecting on the country’s political system since Independence from Australia in 1975.

“Without knowing what democracy was and what the Westminster system of government was, our people went to the first national general election in 1978,” the Post-Courier said.

“Since that election, and at every other later election, our people have incorporated the Melanesian Way of leadership into the new democracy we adopted and a home-grown system had flourished.

“The results we have today is the price we are paying.

“Compounding this is other underlying challenge like the integrity of the Electoral Roll that must be addressed.

“Another issue is the weak political party system we have. A small country, PNG has 46 registered political parties to date, each with their own policy platforms.

“It is a nightmare for the voters, no one bothered to get to know all the political parties well.”

PNG independence celebration 2023
School dancers at Thursday’s pre-Independence celebration addressed by Prime Minister James Marape. Image: Post-Courier

Republished from the PNG Post-Courier with permission.

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