Showing posts with label Papua New Guinea Teachers Association. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Papua New Guinea Teachers Association. Show all posts

Corruption in PNG: Addressing Systematic Corruption in PNG

Papua New Guinea (PNG) is a resource-rich country, with vast mineral and oil reserves, but it is also notorious for its high levels of corruption. According to the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), corruption costs PNG's economy over 10% of its GDP, or about US$1.5 billion per year. 

Corruption in PNG undermines public trust in government, distorts markets, and erodes the rule of law, leading to political instability, economic underperformance and unhappy people.

Political will lacking - ICAC & NACD

The PNG government has taken some steps to address corruption in recent years, including the establishment of the Independent Commission Against Corruption (ICAC) and the National Anti-Corruption Directorate (NACD). 

However, progress has been slow, and many argue that these institutions lack independence, resources, and political support to effectively investigate and prosecute corruption cases. 

As a result, PNG continues to rank low in Transparency International's Corruption Perceptions Index, currently ranking 130th out of 180 countries in 2023.

Corruption in PNG: Addressing Systematic Corruption in PNG

Systemic vs. Systematic Corruption in PNG

Corruption in PNG can be characterised as both systemic and systematic. 

  • Systemic Corruption: Systemic corruption refers to the deep-rooted and widespread nature of corruption in PNG's society and institutions, where corruption is embedded in social norms, practices, and networks. For example, as highlighted in a recent Devpolicy article, everyday corruption is common in PNG, where people offer bribes to avoid fines or gain access to public services. In many cases, people do not see this as wrongdoing but rather as a way of life, reflecting the lack of trust and confidence in public institutions.

  • Systematic Corruption: On the other hand, systematic corruption refers to the organised and deliberate nature of corruption in PNG, where corruption is used as a tool to gain and maintain power, influence decisions, and extract rents from public resources. This type of corruption involves collusion between politicians, bureaucrats, and business elites, who use their positions to engage in illegal activities such as embezzlement, kickbacks, and nepotism. As pointed out in a PNG Attitude article, this form of corruption has been evident in recent high-profile cases, such as the UBS loan scandal, where politicians and public officials were accused of receiving bribes in exchange for a government loan.

Balanced Argument on Corruption in PNG

The issue of corruption in PNG is complex and multifaceted, and requires a comprehensive approach that addresses both the systemic and systematic aspects of corruption. 

While the establishment of ICAC and NACD is a positive step, these institutions need to be adequately resourced and empowered to carry out their mandates effectively. 

Importantly, political will and leadership are crucial in creating an environment where corruption is not tolerated and where institutions can operate independently and without fear of retribution.

At the same time, addressing systemic corruption in PNG requires a shift in mindset and cultural norms, where people are educated and encouraged to view corruption as a harmful and unacceptable practice. 

As highlighted in the Devpolicy article, tackling everyday corruption in PNG requires not only punitive measures but also a focus on promoting transparency, accountability, and citizen participation in decision-making processes. This requires a long-term and sustained effort to build trust in institutions and to create a culture of integrity and ethical behaviour.

Addressing systematic corruption in PNG

Finally, addressing systematic corruption in PNG requires addressing the underlying political and economic structures that enable and perpetuate corruption. 

This involves promoting transparency and accountability in public procurement processes, strengthening regulatory frameworks, and reducing the concentration of power and resources in the hands of a few elites. 

As argued in the PNG Attitude article (linked above), addressing systematic corruption requires a fundamental shift in the way PNG's political and economic systems operate, and this will require strong and sustained political leadership and a commitment to reform.


Corruption in PNG is a significant challenge that requires a multifaceted and sustained effort to address. The establishment of institutions such as ICAC and NACD is a positive step, but more needs to be done to ensure they are adequately resourced and empowered to carry out their mandates effectively. 

To make progress in combating corruption, PNG must also address the underlying political and economic structures that enable corruption to persist. This involves:

  • promoting transparency and accountability in public procurement processes, 
  • strengthening regulatory frameworks, and
  • reducing the concentration of power and resources in the hands of a few elites.

All in all, the fight against corruption in PNG requires strong and sustained political leadership and a commitment to reform. It will not be an easy or quick process, but it is essential for the future prosperity and stability of the country.

Provincial Education Advisers and Administrative Officers Are Misusing Teachers' Leave Fares

(former Education Officer in charge of teachers' leave fares in Morobe)

Pic courtesy: Post Courier Newspaper Jan 2015
The teachers leave fares issue has been ongoing matter mostly due to misappropriation by Division of Education heads in all provinces. Funds allocated purposely for leave fares were usually tampered with and diverted to cover up for shortfalls in other votes or items.

I am speaking from experience especially in Morobe where the highest allocation is given. Yet this is forever an issue year in year out. As the person formally in charge of teachers leave fares in Morobe, I can attest that the fault entirely lies with the provincial authorities and financial delegates in form of provincial education advisers and provincial administrative officers.

Every year funds have always allocated with delivery mechanism designed and in place to have all teachers receive their entitlements, but this all seemed on paper only as half of the funds has always been diverted to cover up for excessive travels, hire cars, hotel bills and travel allowances especially by senior officers.

The Department of Education and Teaching Services Commission should also shoulder blame as this is an overdue issue that should have been resolved a long time ago. Policies and TSC Act Section 130 that manages the teachers leave fares is outdated and should be updated with proper delivery mechanism in place that allows paying of leave fare without obstacles. The current delivery mechanism is effective, but needs tighter stringent measures on this funds so there is no diversion and misuse by provincial authorities, means the Finance Management Act also comes into play so this also has to be updated with stringent control on its use.

Morobe Province being the largest with highest number of teachers is a classic example of how funds meant for teachers leave fare has always had funds diverted by the education adviser and his administrative officer. Every year problems faced by teachers in regards to this has always been ignored and repeated the next year without anything being done by higher authorities.

Papua New Guinea Teachers' Association Must Stand Up For Teachers Without Media Bashing

There is no need to go on strike yet. Teachers from Elementary to Secondary schools in each province have reps. They form the PNGTA. There needs to be a collaborative effort from them to fight for teachers' remuneration and benefits. 

Papua New Guinea Teachers' Association

Unlike before, Facebook (and access to it) has changed the way Papua New Guineans communicate. PNGTA (Papua New Guinea Teachers' Association) Chairman and reps from 22 provinces should, first, create an avenue for discussion. FB would be a good place to start. 

Papua New Guinea Teachers' Association

Papua New Guinea Teachers' Association to communicate with teachers' reps

They must stay in touch with teachers - communicate: find out if they have received their pay increase, Boarding and Duty allowances...etc. They have to have facts and figures at their fingertips. 

That information must be presented to the National Department of Education, Teachers' Service Commission and Education Minister on regular basis - this is their job. They MUST do that as well as 'media-bashing'. 

PNGTA must fight for teachers

The PNGTA must pursue legal challenges to ascertain irregularities in teachers' entitlements if they have to. They must ensure that the govt remains true to its PROMISES of pay increases. 

As I posted some time ago, by 2016 every public servant will have realised a 30% increase in their salaries - this includes the teachers. 

Recently, there is another increase in PNG Public Servants' pay (2022-2024) but the poor teachers will have to find out exactly what they are getting.

PNGTA has to ensure that the government does what it says

That implies that the PNG government has made a promise to pay the increase. So, PNGTA has to ensure that the government does what it says. If teachers are not receiving the increase or other entitlements over a year, they have to determine why. 

Finally, the onus is on PNGTA and teachers' reps in each province. If the association feels that there is a need to call for strike action,  by all means, they must do. 

But, going on strike (or pretending to go on strike by going to the media like the PNGTA chairman did) is not the best way forward.

Ganim Report: National Department of Education and Teachers' Service Commission Need Proactive Leaders To Effect GR Recommendations


TSC Chairman, Mr Baran Sori, and NDoE secretary, Dr Michael Tapo, must be suspended for incompetency. Why a report - the Ganim Report - sanctioned by the Parliamentary Referral Committee on Education and conducted between March and April last year failed  on its 'Initial Findings'? 

As reported (in Post Courier) Ganim report was a working progress, but given that these leaders in Education are committee members, you would have thought last year should have ended well for teachers. They have seen the findings, they made submissions to PRCE, yet why have teachers not given 2014 leave entitlements?

The heads of education in the country are as dumb as any provincial education authorities and past and current education ministers. A bad combination!

PNGTA is planning court action. If a nationwide strike by teachers stops 2015 academic year, heads must roll. 

Get someone new to effect the recommendation of Ganim report. 

PC report
TEACHER woes in the country is no "overnight" problem which all 48,000 teachers in the country must first understand and bear with before help and long term solutions can be sought, Chairman of Parliamentary Referral Committee on Education (PRCE) and Wabag Open MP, Robert Ganim has said.

As such, he urged all teachers to refrain from any sort of industrial actions that could jeopardize the start of 2015 school year which millions of school children could be affected unfairly.

Mr. Ganim who led a PRCE nationwide investigation into the issues of teachers in the country between March and April last year said details of his findings (Ganim Report or GR) were presented to Parliament in its August 26 session.

Parliament adopted the GR and resolved that the Teaching Service Commission (TSC) and the Department of Education (DoE) undertake the recommendations and report back to Parliament within three (3) months.

Pic courtesy: Post Courier - Cyril Gare file pic 
TSC Chairman, Mr. Baran Sori flanked by his Commissioners was addressing the PRCE Committee at the Parliament B2 Conference room on April 10, 2014 during the nationwide investigation into teachers’ issues. Cyril Gare file pic.

Upon which, a combined approach was taken by the TSC and DoE between September and November last year through the establishment of a Working Committee (WC) comprising TSC Chairman, Baran Sori as Chairman, Dr. Uke Kombra, Mr. Titus Romano Hatagen, PNG Teachers’ Association General Secretary, Mr. Ugwalabu Mowana, and Fr. Paul Jennings.

The WC undertook the recommendations of Parliament which resulted in a detail Report that is ready to be presented to PRCE Chairman Ganim who then will present to Parliament for adaptation when it resumes on February 10, 2015 at 2:30 pm.

The WC Report provides specific policy directions, identifies strategic outcomes, provides general guidelines in implementing these policy directions, set out the monitoring and evaluation framework, and provides costing – about K26 million - for its implementation over a five (5) year period (2015-2019).

According to the WC, the Government has work to do - in the long term - in addressing the teachers’ problems in these key areas:

 Review functions of Teaching Service Commission (TSC) and Department of Education (DoE);

 Review and define teachers’ salaries and allowances;

 Review the teacher appointment process;

 Review the tenure appointment process;

 Review salaries and entitlements of teachers;

 Decentralize ALESCO pay system to provincial education authorities;

 Adopt an effective and efficient teacher leave fare management;

 Create a leave fare data base;

 Make TSC assumes financial autonomy as a separate entity of State;

 Review process of retrenchment, retirement and resignation of teachers;

 Establish a centralised teachers’ information database; and

Provide manpower and capacity development for teachers.

PNG Teachers Delayed Salaries and Allowances Amidst MPs' Salary Increases

Many Papua New Guineans eagerly anticipate the holiday season, but for some public servants, such as teachers, it can be a challenging time.

In a Facebook group called "PNG Teachers" with over 2500 members, teachers express their struggles with delayed leave fares and boarding/duty allowances, which are supposed to be mandatory entitlements. 

These delays have become a chronic issue that occurs every year, leaving teachers frustrated and struggling to make ends meet during the holiday season.

See the latest pay increase for teachers, click here

PNG Teachers pay compared to PNG MPs salary - current members of parliament in png 2023

Disparity in Salary Increases Compared to MPs

In 2013, when Dr Puka Temu announced a 7.5% salary increase for members of parliament (MPs) along with a concurrent 2.5% increase until 2016, many teachers were hopeful that similar increases would be implemented for public servants. 

However, while MPs received their 7% increase backdated to January 1st of 2013 and continue to enjoy further increases, there are doubts about whether other public servants, including teachers, received their promised increments. 

This disparity in salary increases has left teachers feeling neglected and undervalued.

Challenges with Pay Grade and Pay Slips

Another challenge faced by teachers is the lack of transparency in determining their pay grades. Many teachers, especially new graduates and those in remote locations, do not receive pay slips and may not even know what one looks like. 

Salaries are calculated by adjusting to a midpoint salary, which has increased over the years, but it remains unclear whether teachers have actually received the promised increments for 2013 and 2014. 

This lack of clarity in pay structure and increments adds to the frustration and uncertainty among teachers.

Call for Action and Accountability

Teachers' representatives from the PNG Teachers Association need to highlight these issues and hold the government accountable for their promises. 

It is crucial to address the delays in leave fares and boarding/duty allowances, ensure that teachers receive their pay slips and that the promised salary increments are reflected in their pay. 

With the recent salary increases for MPs, there is a pressing need to ensure that teachers, who play a vital role in educating the nation's youth, are not left behind and are fairly compensated for their hard work and dedication.

As everyone prepares for the holiday season, many teachers are facing challenges with delayed salaries, allowances, and a lack of transparency in the pay structure. 

While MPs have received significant salary increases, teachers feel neglected and undervalued. It is imperative for the government to fulfil their promises and ensure that teachers are fairly compensated for their crucial role in shaping the nation's future. 

Final Words PNG Teachers Delayed Pay and Allowances

In conclusion, teachers' representatives must advocate for their rights and hold the government accountable for addressing these issues promptly. 

It is time to prioritize the welfare of teachers and provide them with the support and recognition they deserve.



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