Somare looking increasingly corrupt and out of touch

It has been a bad seven days for Papua New Guinea Prime Minister, Michael Somare.

Firstly, last Wednesday, he was recommended for further investigation by the police under the criminal code for his unlawful conduct in engineering the escape of Julian Moti from lawful custody.

PNGs Prime Minister is looking increasingly corrupt

Then it became apparent that the Prime Minister had also failed to cooperate with the Ombudsman Commission investigation of the Moti affair and that he had attempted to prevent senior civil servants from giving evidence – leading the Ombudsman Commission and the media to claim a cover-up orchestrated by the PM.

To make things worse, on Friday of last week Somare was further accused of having compromised sea safety by unlawfully interfering in the appointment of the Chairman of the National Maritime Safety Authority and fostering on the nation a candidate who was eminently unsuitable for the role.

But it is the Prime Ministers reaction to these unfavorable findings from PNGs respected and independent Ombudsman Commission that says most about his lack of respect for the institutions of government and his arrogant disdain for the people of Papua New Guinea.

Rather than promising to cooperate with the proper authorities who are trying to do their constitutional jobs, the Prime Minister has chosen to attack them and try and destroy their credibility.

The Prime Minister has said he finds the “conduct of the Ombudsman Commission to be calculating, mischievous and lacking in transparency” and that its motive as appearing to be “sinister and reflecting a lack of objectivity and fairness in dealing with the matter at hand”

The Prime Minister seems to be forgetting that it was he who refused to cooperate with the Ombudsman Investigation in the Julian Moti affair; that it was he who issues an order trying to prevent senior civil servants from giving evidence; and that it was he who insisted Hamish Sharp be appointed Chair of the Maritime Safety Authority at a time when Sharp had been heavily criticized by the Authority over the sinking of one of his vessels and was suing the authority over its findings and for K1 million for defamation.

Further the Commission, after a 3 year inquiry and based on a 70 page report and substantial evidence including sworn testimony from numerous senior individuals including the former acting PNG Defence Force Commander and police Director of Legal Services, that it was Prime Minister Somare who unlawfully ordered Julian Moti’s release from custody and his escape from PNG on an air force plane.

The Ombudsman has also found that Somare coerced his Transport Minister to appoint Hamish Sharp as Chair of the Maritime Safety Board and that the appointment was made without due compliance with the law.  Since his appointment in 2006 Mr Sharp has only called two board meetings “seriously impacting on safety for the travelling public and ships crews”.

By attacking the Ombudsman Commission the Prime Minister is giving his approval for every other senior leader to ignore the institutions of government and showing that he regards himself to be above the law.

Clearly PNG can make no progress in defeating endemic corruption while Michael Somare remains Prime Minister.


13 Responses to “Somare looking increasingly corrupt and out of touch”

  1. The PM is loosing his credibility so its high time he should leave politics and do some noble. For the PM to accuse the ombudsmen commission is totally unwanted and he is becoming public disgrace.

  2. Corruption begins and ends with the head of PNG so what should we do about it?

    It all begins with us…The decision we make determines the country’s future so let’s elect leaders who will run this country truthfully and in honesty.

  3. This idiot has a history of believing that he is above the law. He was only a pin up by for the real men who brought our country to independence and yet thinks he is the man. Bloody useless!!

    This numbskull has done more damage to PNG in the last 7 years than whatever little positives he may have done for our country in his entire lifetime.

    Mi bai drink wan carton beer na celebrate taim displa idiot ya take off lusim ples graun. My flag will be at full mast on that glorious day.

  4. Papua New Guineans are good at complaining about how corrupt our leaders are……..come election year, more corrupt leaders,or even the same ones are elected back into government, so what are we complaining about?
    The future of this country is in the hands of you so-called elites/cream of the nataion…and what are you going to do about it??
    Lets not complain, lets be pro-active or PNG will soon be a dictator country where the government goes ahead with its decisions regardless of the people and the Oppositions stand on any issue at hand

  5. And while we’re at it…..why should we the ordinary citizens of PNG pay tax to the government when multi-BILLIONAIRE companies coming into the country are mining our resources for FREE/UNTAXED????

  6. The Prime Minister has become arrogant and self centred forgeting the people of PNG who gave him his big name status and helping himself to the riches of the country without any consideration for the growth and well being of PNG and its people.

    Somare, your time is up! If you have any love for this country and its people left in your heart, you will not suppress them anymore and step down and let the government work for the people and not just for you.

  7. It is frightening when the Prime Minister himself is breaking the Law. The question is “Where does this leave Papua New Guinea?”

    I think his time is up as the Prime Minister of this nation. We need new breed of leaders who can not work only politics but can lead this nation. This country needs leaders who have leadership qualitites. Law breakers are not leaders, they are criminals.

    God save Papua New Guinea

  8. Imagine what would happen if the power of the people was displayed in its true colours without being intimidated or harrassed by armed personnel. All it takes is for every citizen, private sector worker, workers union, public servants, pmv and taxi operators to stop work for a day or two in disgust over the PM’s actions and see what happens.

  9. Chris Karuah Says:

    Tell us something we didn’t already know. But what are we the small people to do about it. Its been happening for years and all over the world, so PNG is no exception. We have all this resources yet have nothing to show for it, atleast for us those who are struggling to pay taxes, bills, kids school fees, health services, high goods prices etc..
    Come LNG, the gap between the haves and the have not will increase and of course crime or corruption whatever one may call it.
    Any way what has Moti done for this country for us to waste so much on investigating it? If Australia was dead serious about cupturing Moti why for him to come to PNG to be arrested. I smell rotten fish.

    • Don’t confuse the issues Chris.

      There are two: 1) Moti and Australians 2) Moti and Papua New Guineans.

      Issue # 1 you are talking about is a non issue. That’s none of PNG’s issue.

      Issue # 2 is an issue for us. Why? Simply because Moti caused our prime minister and a myriad of other influential people in positions of trut and power to break PNG laws. That is THE issue at hand for which this half wit PM has been taken to task for.

  10. A B Jorin Says:

    May I appeal for all thinking Papua New Guineans to stop and take a close look at the status of our current political situation. As you all know well by now its Somare-led government of corruption at its best. We the people of PNG should not tolorate this demon-infested individuals to ride on our power. These animals don’t have the power – we have the power.
    I recommend that all law enforcing agents together with every single Papua New Guinean stop work for two days in protest of gross mismanagement of this country of ours by these few devils. They are basically there to steal from us, deprive us for all that we deserve from good governance.
    It is public knowledge that Somare and his kitchen cabinet have truly sold this country to the Asians namely – RH and MCC. They bought of the government of Somare and they are in fact dictating and manipulating the lawmakers as they have been overtaken by greed.

  11. Rethinking Social Concerns and Democracy in Papua New Guinea

    Are there any democratic spaces existing for Papua New Guineans to curb all the ills that is going on in parliament? Is Somare’s fight for independence is about all these-for his own sake in PNG? Why do people so adament to speak against or take action for a change of government? Where does Police Force stand? About PNGDF? Ombutsman is atlast taking a step as it is and should be for the good of its people! Somares had remained strong-he has tactically downplayed constitution and continous to remain and do so. There has not been any real challenge to him and for the post of prime minister .

    Where do we go from here if no actions are taken? PNG has been softened by christianity.

    I see, it takes tougher steps toward establishing the full features of liberal democracy by Papua New Guineans. Although it is visible that there are democratic values existing, for instance for respect for human rights of any kind-for example, rights to education, better health facilities, rights to participation in politics, election, service delivery to people at rural and isolated communities, etc, are impractical. Democracy in PNG is sick because most individual people do not have that manifestation of harmony and stability which could produce justice. Some leaders are ambitious of entering politics to make their own businesses. Somare’s and Namah for instance. They compete with other politicians or political parties without full understanding of the nature of politics or of the democratic principles contained and stressed in the constitution. In Papua New Guinea, the big men, the soldierly kind of persons succeed, even now, manipulating the constitution.

    Somare’s must have been voted for teir own good than to serve the bulk of the people in the Sepik and PNG. Most parliamentarians are now grasping that opportunity of making money in parliament and not serving the populace. Some parliamentarians make money by becoming rubber stamps of other parliamentarians. Michael Somare has used them thus as puppets!

    I believe PNG can come about with a progressive social change. This however involves making significant changes on a systemic level. Intellectuals battles/ conflicts should be made with those who hold power. The power that social change agents bring to the table is their ability to organize, to educate and to mobilize where POWES PARKOP does fit.
    Progressive social change is a profoundly democratic undertaking elites of PNG should take. At its best, people of different racial and ethnic backgrounds, sexual orientations, abilities and ages must join together in developing and implementing creative solutions to social problems. It is said, organizing amplifies the voices of those whose interests are too often overlooked.
    Further, money alone does not bring about change; nor do individuals. But when people band together and form organizations to focus their collective power, social change can happen. When a large number of organizations work together toward a common goal, we form a movement and Movements make change. WE must learn of the past mistakes of our fore runners for the betterment!
    Ours is that burst of energy, a sweep of like minded people, outraged and energized, rising forth to demand some form of change. I believe, this thread would be one-day a social change movement that can carefully organize, make massive public education, sustained agitation, and, at times, raise inspired collaboration across the divides of race, gender and class. In deed, such movement can come about through drives by human energy, intelligence, courage – and as well, money.
    For the sake of an equitable and just PNG societal creation, there lies the requirement for structural transformation of political, social and economic systems and institutions. There is democratic spaces that exist for young elites in PNG where intellectual battles/ conflicts should be made with those who hold power, so forth. WE SHOULD have the ability to ORGANIZE, to EDUCATE and to MOBBILIZE people for a BETTER, RIGHT CHANGE!

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