Nature Park Forced Closure Land Issue

The Nature Park in Port Moresby is closed for business indefinitely. The park was affected in a dispute over the land.

Pic: Twitter/@ConfigGuyPOM

Why Nature Park Closure

It is known that the University of Papua New Guinea owns the land on which the park is situated. However, the National Capital District Commission, Lands Department and University of Papua New Guinea are in a debacle over the land forcing the Nature Park to close indefinitely.

The long time residents of Port Moresby would recall how rundown the facilities and grounds were before a new park management came in 2014/2015. It was a wasteland of broken boardwalks, rubbish and dead plants.

Understandably, the park and its owner must pay any money  it owed to UPNG. But does it have to end up with a court battle? Sadly, not!

There are probably other intervention or mediation measures the landlord can take to not disturb the operations of the park.

The Nature Park, in a statement, said
'The recent announcement of the indefinite closure of the Port Moresby Nature Park is a result of a land acquisition matter before the courts between the Department of Lands, the National Capital District Commission (NCDC) and University of Papua New Guinea (UPNG).'  Official Statement 12/11/2019
Have all avenues being exhausted before  the landlord went to court?

I am sure UPNG, in its wisdom, can seek re-address through the city hall or talk directly to the park management to amicably resolve this issue.

Perhaps the first thing in this debacle is allowing public access to the park. In an ideal world, the disgruntled parties would not see it fit to hold the public to ransom for some uncollected debt.

Also, the Nature Park and its owner must pay any money it owes to UPNG as per the Contract Agreements, if any.

It is, in fact, sad to see a recreational area so used and so enjoyed by the general public (and at this busy time) has closed.

So, in the best interest of the users of this beautiful and well-managed park in the city, please resolve this matter immediately.

Let us, the public, use the park and its recreational grounds as we approach the Christmas holidays and festive periods.

Follow the conversation on Twitter. Let us know what you think.

Here is the Public Statement released by the Nature Park management on their Facebook page on the 12th November 2019.


Port Moresby Nature Park recently celebrated its obtainment of International Wildlife Welfare-Accreditation from the Zoo and Aquarium Association of Australasia, the first Pacific Island facility to have passed what is considered globally as the most scientific and rigorous assessment of animal management for zoos and wildlife facilities.  This comes after 7 years of tremendous transformational change with over K7million in public-private partnership funding being spent in the redevelopment of the Park.  As a charitable organisation, the Park has and continues to rely heavily on the commitment of NCDC, the generosity of sponsors and donors, and visitation by the community.   

It was NCDC’s vision to establish the Charitable Trust, overseen by an independent board that would become PNG’s leading recreational space inspiring through education the guardianship of PNG’s unique natural environment.

When one visits the Nature Park it is evident of the staffs commitment to delivering exceptional experiences.  The Nature Park is now the highest visited attraction in Papua New Guinea with over 140,000 visitors, including over 24,000 school students that attend the Park’s educational schools-excursion programs.  In fact, next year the Park will reach it’s 1 millionth visitor through the Park.  Further to this, the Park is a shiny example of the tourism potential of Papua New Guinea and regularly plays a tourism role for key International Events such as APEC and is visited by almost 1 in 5 international visitors to this country.

Over the last 4 years, the Park has taken seriously its role in wildlife conservation and research through its dedication to wildlife conservation and research supporting CEPA, our universities, PHD students and conservations organisations.  This has included the rescue and rehabilitation of hundreds of injured, orphaned and abandoned wildlife, research into pig-nosed turtles growth rates and the release of turtles back into the wild, and breeding programs for endangered and little-known PNG animal species.   The Nature Park has provided many, many opportunities for undergraduate and further education students to gain valuable on-the-job training and skills.

Not only has the Papua New Guinean community taken notice of the Park successes, but so too the Park has shone on the Global stage receiving a number of prestigious awards including a 2016 Award for Innovation and in 2018 an Education Award, both by the Zoo & Aquarium Association of Australasia. The Nature Park was also inducted into the Zoos Victoria Hall of Fame Awards for its commitment to partnership development in 2017 and in 2019 the Park became the first attraction in PNG to receive a Hall of Fame award by TripAdvisor for 5 years of continuous Certificates of Excellence from TripAdvisor. 

Port Moresby Nature Park has quickly become a shining example of what can be achieved through public and private partnership and what a small, charitable organisation can achieve with the right strategic planning, leadership, NCDC, Government and business support, and when combined with a motivated and passionate workforce dedicated to the service of the community.  The Park has always dared to dream big for the benefit of the community and biodiversity.

The recent announcement of the indefinite closure of the Port Moresby Nature Park is a result of a land acquisition matter before the courts between the Department of Lands, the National Capital District Commission (NCDC) and University of Papua New Guinea (UPNG).

NCDC has managed and funded the site since 1993 (formerly as the Botanical Gardens and now Port Moresby Nature Park) investing tens of millions of Kina in this time to ensure that throughout the space has remained opened for the public.

The Port Moresby Nature Park remains committed to NCDC and its goal of securing recreational spaces and activities that improves the lives of its citizens.  Recreational spaces are an important extension of community and when they work well, they serve as sacred spaces to stage our public lives.  Additionally, the Nature Park serves as a facility for education, tourism, research and conservation, all vital activities worth securing for future generations to come.

The management of the Port Moresby Nature Park would like to take the opportunity to thank the general public for its outpouring of support towards our organisation.  Please stand firm in the knowledge that the Nature Park is committed to the community and to conservation and with the support of NCDC will continue to ensuring that the Park remains PNG’s leading recreational space dedicated through education to the guardianship of PNG’s unique natural environment.

We look forward to opening our doors once more and will advise the community in due course.


2020 Public Holiday Dates Published - Plan your Holiday

The 2020 public holidays in Papua New Guinea was published on the 10th of October 2019 by the governor general in the National Gazette 2020.

There are 11 holiday dates to mark on your 2020 calendar. 

  1. New Year 2020 Wednesday 1st January 
  2. Good Friday 10th April, 2020
  3. Easter Saturday 11th April, 2020
  4. Easter Sunday 12th April, 2020
  5. Easter Monday 13th April, 2020
  6. Queen' Birthday Monday 8th June, 2020
  7. National Remembrance Day Thursday 23rd July, 2020
  8. National Repentance Day Wednesday 26th August, 2020
  9. Independence Day Wednesday 16th September, 2020
  10. Christmas Day Friday 25th December, 2020
  11. Boxing Day Saturday 25th December, 2020

Plan your holiday

If you are planning a weekend getaway or spend the long weekends somewhere, check the suggestions here. There are lots of places to visit outside of Port Moresby. 
Papua New Guinea tour
Hula Camping Trip/Motuan Coast/ PNG Insight Photo

If you are a POM resident or local just wanting a day trip awsy from the house and screens, here are 3 suggestions to help you.

1. Port Moresby Parks and Recreation Areas: Varirata National Conservation Park, Nature Park and Adventure Park, Pacific Adventist University Sunday morning market.
2. Travel along the Motuan Coasts: Sunset Lodge, March Girls Resort, Loloata Island Resort, Tutu Beach Retreat.
3. Weekend away to Sogeri Plateau: Koitachi Country Club, Kokoda Trail Memorial, Kokoda Lodge, Crystal Rapids Falls.

For those wanting to have restful day in POM can relax and have fun at the following places.
1. Stanley Hotel Poolside
2. Hilton Hotel and Accommodation 
3. Downtown Harbourside Restaurants and Cafe 
4. Vision City Cinema 
5. The New Ela Beach

Kids things to do in POM

1. Lamana 10 Pins Lanes Bowling
2. Play Station Kids Indoor Play Area
3. Nature Park Holiday Fun and Activities
4. Adventure Park Fishing Competition 
5. Port Moresby Yacht Club Kids Playground

There are lots of things you can do around Port Moresby to keep the whole family occupied over the 2020 holidays and long weekends.

6 Must-See Provinces

Papua New Guinea TOURs
Rabaul Volcanoe /PNG Insight photo

Easter would be a good time to travel out to explore the beauty of PNG. The 6 *must* visit destinations in PNG:
1. Rabaul - swim with dolphins and visit the volcanoes.
2. Hagen - travel along the Baiyer and Kitip roads, and visit the local/traditional singings.
3. Kavieng - travel along the Kavieng-Namatanai Highway and visit the Eel Lady.
4. Goroka - Visit the Asaro Mudmen.
5. Alotau - travel to the pristine islands and snorkel.
6. Tufi/Oro - Tufi is a diver's paradise descibed by influential diver's magazines as the 'best' diving destination in the South Pacific.Or, relax by the beach and enjoy canoeing and fjord getaways. :)
Tufi beach and fjord

Well, these are a few things that come to mind. There are even more for the inquisitive explorers. Have fun!

Let us know if there is any places around POM or places that you think we should add to the list. 


Writing CV and Job Interview Tips

The two steps to securing a job is not usually taught at universities - writing a CV or resume and job interview. In fact, the two skills are often learnt by doing them. If you are a new job searcher, undergraduate or graduate these tips will put you in the right direction.

From writing a curriculum vitae (CV) or to interview, always bear these tips in mind. For more guided tips, refer to the recommended reading at the end of this post.
cv and job interview tips
Find out whether the job advertisement asks for your CV or resume before writing your job application.

The content of a CV should reflect the position you are applying for.

Ensure only details relevant to the job you are applying for are included: must be condensed, concise and informative.

Use the ‘punchline’ in your written CV that you believe is selling you well and emphasise it with specific examples.

Be honest, measured, cool, calm and collected. It is the first impression that matters.

Be on time for the interview and show that your really want the job. Good luck.

Recommended reading 

How to write a CV with Strong Punchline

Australian Awards: Graduate Certificate in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematic (STEM) Education

Australia Awards is seeking suitable applicants to apply for the Graduate Certificate in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematic (STEM) Education short course.

The course is targeting employees from the Department of Education and other education agencies who are in roles where they have responsibility for teaching, designing and implementing STEM Education policies and programs including at the national, sectoral and provincial levels.

To apply for this short course, applicants must:
  • Demonstrate direct involvement in STEM Education in your area of work
  • Have a minimum of five years professional teaching or curriculum development experience (which could be in Chemistry, Physics, Mathematics, Advanced Mathematics, ICT, Agriculture, Biology, Fine Arts, Design Technology, Science, Applied Science or Engineering)
  • Have a bachelor’s degree or equivalent and teacher registration
  • Have a minimum academic English proficiency level equivalent of IELTS 6.5/TOEFL 575 (shortlisted applicants may be required to undertake a test facilitated by Australia Awards).
  • Have a commitment to prepare and implement an innovative work-based project as part of the course requirement

The applicant must engage actively and foster networks with multiple stakeholders, including in Australia, and to disseminate learning from the course with students, colleagues and peers in your respective organisations.

Applications close 5:00pm on Friday 29 November 2019.

Download a Graduate Certificate in STEM Factsheet list below click HERE.

  • Graduate Certificate in STEM Application Form_GoPNG (Word)
  • Graduate Certificate in STEM Application Form_GoPNG (PDF
  • Graduate Certificate in STEM Application Form_Private Sector & Civil Society (Word)
  • Graduate Certificate in STEM Application Form_Private Sector & Civil Society (PDF)

Source: Australia Awards in PNG