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Posts Tagged ‘Gary Juffa’

Corrupt logging interests attempt to overthrow reformist Governor

October 21, 2014 6 comments

GARY’S THOUGHTS AS A VOTE OF NO CONFIDENCE MOTION LOOMS

By Gary Juffa – Papua New Guinea My Land My Country

As a vote of no confidence against Oro Governor, Gary Juffa, looms, he writes about the successes and challenges he faces against the old guard. 

gary juffaI was bemused and intrigued by the press release of 7 Presidents and Open Member David Arore proclaiming a vote of no confidence. I am glad. It gives me an opportunity to say what has been happening and what I have been doing. It also gives me an opportunity to gauge my peoples views and see where they stand. Whether they want change for the better or whether they want to continue to slip into the abyss of miserable anarchy and deteriorate as a people. Already the support is mounting and overwhelming. Tribesmen from all parts of Oro mobilized with the intent of demonstrating their outrage with violence. I stopped them all. This is not the way my people. Let us exhaust all legal means and let us not be shaken by the mere whimpering of a collection of sad people who claim they are leaders. They are not leaders. They are politicians. There is a fundamental difference.

So I sipped my black tea and watched semi interested as they aired their views. I had been monitoring these group since they came to Port Moresby some two weeks ago and were sighted drinking in the usual nightclubs and comfort lounges around Port Moresby. They were all at some little lodge in Boroko.

Intelligence is the end product of analysed information/data. I have a system to collect and collate and present such intelligence to me so I can make informed decisions. Our intelligence told us several things: that several weeks before the media stunt there were several meetings between certain Asian entities and the presidents and their open member. These Asians are heavily involved in the logging industry. Our informant was in their very midst. He sighted them and heard them discussing their plans. They would stop at nothing to log our forests. The recent suspension by the Forest Minister after we had furnished his office an investigation report based on complaints of our landowners in the Yema Gaipa Timber Permit Area where illegal logging had been occurring at day and night was yet another catalyst.

Further intelligence deduced that the recent actions in the last month by the Land Enforcement to travel to Collingwood Bay and impound Logging Machines and give notice to foreign workers illegally there to vacate that property in 7 days has added to the desire by the logging fraternity to see me removed. Imagine what would happen if everyone rose up behind me and removed them? That is a frightening thought. They MUST stop this and nip it in the bud before it gets out of hand. The people cannot be allowed to rise up and stand for their own rights they say to each other in between bales of illicit logging cash they make from our forests.

All this only added to growing anxiety that the illicit revenue stream of the pirates and their minions would come to an end…

Now add to this the recent Provincial Government reforms undertaken that have since seen the establishing of stringent controls to ensure transparent expenditure of public funds by all custodians including me. This has suddenly exposed the Two Open Members who have been using their Joint District Planning and Budget Prioritization Committees as procurement authorities…which is illegal…the laws do not allow that…the JDPBPC is merely a committee to prioritize the disbursement of DSIP funds. The process must come through the Administration for vetting, analysing, review and monitoring. I am pleased to see that we have changed the public service mindset in Oro and they are now well on track to deliver. I have asked that the Open Members MUST put their DSIP through this legitimate process as I am doing.

Meanwhile stringent efforts to tackle corruption continue. The great job undertaken by PPC Victor ISUOVE to analyse Auditor General Reports for the last so many years and act upon recommendations is well underway. PPC Jacob SINGURA has continued with this effort and so far, 11 public servants have been criminally charged. Others are yet to follow. The Ijivitari District Treasury closed by angry landowners for two weeks has had no less then 3/4 of their staff charged.

Most recently as of last month a Treasury Officer in the Provincial Government Treasury was charged for stealing K400,000 with her husband. More are yet to follow.

As for service delivery, the Province has not received its K10m Special Support Infrastructure Grants for this year though we have been promised and I have former Treasury Don POLYE making that commitment on video. I have been advised it is put to next year. We have also not received the balance of K3m for disaster relief which we wanted to build a Disaster Management Centre. I am informed next year as well. We have also not received the K10m promised to help with our Tourism Industry. I am assured it is in next years budget. 3/4 of my PSIP is now about to be expended as we now have the Provincial Supplies and Tenders Board in place and the first meeting is this week. Prior to that leaders and Administration were illegally issuing COIs – Certificates of Inexpediency – which are only for disaster periods and sanctioned by the NEC and allows circumventing of proper procurement processes and procedures stipulated by the Finance Management Act.

Despite this, we have established a Health Authority (thanks kakana Micheal Malabag) and have taken our Health from 4 Doctors to 18 Doctors (thanks Dr. Gunzee Gawin – my adopted Hunjara tribesman). In partnership with YWAM and Dr Alice Lee we have immunized more then 3000 children, removed countless cataracts and fixed countless dental issues in remote areas never before seen. Tribal Foundation is sending a 40ft container of hospital equipment from Australia and our own efforts will see another 40ft from Brisbane (thanks brother Simon Simon P Merton who is single handedly doing something for his beloved mother Felicity Juffa’s people) with school and hospital equipment. We have also partnered with the SDA Church and ANGLICAN Churches in sponsoring their programs when and where we can. Saiho Hospital is refurbished an operational in Kaiva area serving 50,000 people.

A real winner is the establishment of the Disaster Management Centre and many, many thanks goes to Trevor Magei and Donald Moi for their contribution here. We now have a Provincial Disaster Management Policy and a Provincial Disaster Management Centre will be built. More importantly, we are able to respond in 24 hours and the Disaster Management Team has saved countless lives already. Thanks guys.Law and Order is manageable. We are building Police houses and the patrol post

at Saiho and the Police are working tirelessly and with great enthusiasm. Prior to coming in, Popondetta was a township of 1 murder per month at the least with the tag of Cowboy Kantri. That is no more. Nights are peaceful and women and children can rest and go about their daily duties in peace without drunkard partying into the early hours as was normal.
Economic progress will see Oro take charge of their own resources and destiny. I will remain tight lipped here until I deliver. I have 3 years and I will deliver the economic independence my people have lacked. Agriculture and tourism will be the backbone.

I can’t list everything we have done. It is too long a list. My mistake was not promoting my efforts. I will do more. I write my own media and press releases and it is exhausting when one is trying to do much.

Finally, our four bridges worth K135m are being built. It took seven long years. No one followed up or did anything. I took 6 months to walk every process through until the contracts were finally signed at Government House and Canstruct Ltd a Australian Company was selected. They are now on the ground. They are busy building the bridges that were washed away in 2007 by floods caused by Cyclone Guba. They will save more lives.

Intelligence is necessary for gauging what is going on and acting accordingly.

I am informed that my efforts are touching many people who have fed on a corrupt system for too long…there is light at the end of the tunnel…

 

Court order confirms landowners victory over Malaysian land grabbers

May 25, 2014 Leave a comment

Collingwood Court Order_20 May 2014_1

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Oro government leads in the fight against illegal land grabbing

April 16, 2014 2 comments

From ACT NOW!

Gary Juffa opposition to SABL land grab exposes Peter O'Neill's inaction

Gary Juffa opposition to SABL land grab exposes Peter O’Neill’s inaction

While PNG Prime Minister Peter O’Neill sits on his hands refusing to cancel unlawful SABL leases and stop illegal logging, the Oro Provincial government is standing with its people against the Malaysian led land grab.

In a statement issued overnight, Oro Governor Gary Juffa has again committed his government to assist landowners:

“That the Oro Government stands by its people in fighting against land grabbing, illegal logging and is willing to support their court cases with its own legal team and attending as a party to all cases of such.

“We are also taking to task several companies who have obtained land illegally and will fight all this through the courts of PNG.

“My Government has placed a moratorium on all land dealings in Oro and it is still very much in force and will be with all dealings to be reviewed by a committee established at some time in the future.

“As for landgrabbers and their pokies playing, beer swilling, corridor walking scamming and scheming – Oro is closed for illegal business…we welcome genuine investors only…”

The position of the Oro Provincial government stands in stark contrast to the position of Prime Minister Peter O’Neill who continues to protect the Malaysian logging companies who are making huge profits from their stolen timber.

Peter O’Neill has failed to implement the recommendations of the recent SABL land grab Commission of Inquiry which found the SABL leases had been unlawfully and fraudulently issued. The Commission recommended the unlawful leases be immediately revoked, but the Peter O’Neill led government has done nothing with those findings.

 

Juffa criticizes Housing Corporation

November 7, 2013 1 comment

EMTV

Oro Governor, Gary Juffa has criticized the National Housing Corporation for eviction people without having alternate plans.

Governor Juffa said NHC has a record of carrying out evictions and then selling properties to foreign entities.

 

His criticisms come after the business arm of NHC, National Housing Estate Limited issued a warning to tenants of 5-mile, 3-mile and Saraga in the nation’s capital.

Making reference to the North Waigani Hostel eviction earlier this year, Governor Juffa accused the government for neglecting its people.

He said NHC, is a government institution that’s supposed to serve the interest of its people.

His view on the seven days’ notice issued to tenants in three NHC properties in NCD is that the government is unfair on Papua New Guineans.

The Governor made an appeal to the Housing Minister and NHE management to refrain from issuing eviction notices if they do not have a plan to address the ongoing housing problems.

He questioned why properties were sold to foreign entities and if the government was doing its duty in serving the interest of the people.

A former public servant, Governor Juffa is aware of the high rate of housing rentals in the city and the hardships faced by public servants in trying to find a roof over their head.

Seventeen months but still no justice for the people of Oro

June 4, 2013 2 comments

It is now 17 months since we first exposed the criminal misuse of Restoration Funds in Oro Province but, despite the attentions of the police, Ombudsman Commission and local politicians, there has still been no justice for the long suffering people.

This is how we first exposed the scam:

Within days we were told the police were to make arrests: Sacked financial controller to be arrested for fraud

But still the revelations about the extent of the corruption kept coming:

The police stepped up their investigation: Oro duo wanted for stealing property

Within weeks the of the exposure, the Ombudsman Commission promised an investigation: Ombudsman Commission to probe Oro disaster funds.

There was even a short documentary on the scandal: Rising from the Rubble.

Yet we are now 17 months on and there is still there is no justice for the people of Oro Province and our politicians are still crying their  crocodile tears:

Spending questioned at PNG Authority tasked with cyclone rehab

Radio New Zealand

Questions have been raised about a body set up to help fix damaged infrastructure in Oro Province after the devastating Cyclone Guba hit Papua New Guinea in 2007.
The Oro Restoration Authority was established by the government as a result of the cyclone, given nine million US dollars and tasked with restoring basic services to the villages.
The MP for Sohe in Oro Province, Delilah Gore, says the cyclone, which killed at least 170 people, destroyed many bridges, roads, and basic services.
She says in her electorate they haven’t seen any improvements.
“The Restoration Authority was put in place by the previous government, nothing has been done so far so I raised it on the floor with the hope that this government will take note of that and revive the restoration and do new appointments, give money so they can restore services, especially the infrastructure.”
The Governor of Oro Province, Gary Juffa, says he has already taken steps to investigate the Authority and says if people are found to have misused funding, they’ll be dealt with accordingly.

PNG’s Juffa seeks new approach to policing

April 30, 2013 Leave a comment

Radio New Zealand

The outspoken Papua New Guinea MP Gary Juffa says to address the country’s chronic law and order problems requires a holistic approach.

The Governor of Oro Province, Mr Juffa says among the priorities for PNG should be to modernise the police force, replenish the prosecutorial offices and bolster the judiciary.

He says that as well as a large number of violent crimes that need investigating, there is a lot of white-collar crime which PNG must deal with.

Gary Juffa spoke to Johnny Blades about his ideas for addressing the law and order crisis.

JUFFA: “The police has not been developed and modernised over a period of years, I would say, since independence. If you look at the population of PNG as it is now, it’s between 7 million and 8 million. The population of PNG at independence was about 2.8 million thereabouts. The police staff ceiling was 4,000, 5,000 officers. That staff ceiling has not improved till now. It’s still 5,000 officers. You’ve got an ageing force, you’ve got a huge population. You’ve got an increase in the types of crimes. There’s complex violent crimes, there’s complex fraud and so forth, and the police are just unable to cope because they just do not have the resources, nor do they have the manpower, the numbers. Morale is down. They need to modernise and modify themselves to cope with the problems they face in today’s world.”

BLADES: “Is the O’Neill government doing anything about this, do you think? Significant moves?”

JUFFA: “I’m satisfied that they are making a significant move in that direction. They’ve just carried out a modernisation program and they are now in the process of trying to recruit more policemen. You have a recruitment program annually so that these numbers can be improved. They are trying to look at the ageing force and retiring a number of the upper echelon of the police so they can bring in new officers. They’re also looking at creating an independent commission against corruption, a new body that will have federal powers to investigate serious corruption in the country.”

BLADES: “Will this just follow on from Sam Koim’s team?”

JUFFA: “I think the intention is to give some more resources and definition to that taskforce. Sam Koim’s taskforce, which has been doing a tremendous job under very harsh conditions or restrictions, they’ve achieved a lot and I would support that bill.”

BLADES: “Do you think that taskforce is going to be able to see through some prosecution? Obviously they’re not doing the prosecution. Do you think it’ll come about, because there are going to be some high-level embarrassments?”

JUFFA: “What has happened here is while we have created the taskforce, we need to revamp the prosecution aspect. And that office is a malnourished office insofar as resources are concerned. The prosecution office needs to be completely overhauled. You need to bring in vibrant, very effective prosecutors, well-trained, with experience – I would even go as far as suggesting from overseas. Give them the resources, then they will be able to take what the taskforce is doing to another level and achieve some outcomes. But then you’d have to look at the judiciary as well, which is quite depleted of staff. There are not enough magistrates, there are not enough judges. The case turnover is very slow. These things have to be all addressed holistically.”

Call for ICAC bill to be expedited

March 27, 2013 Leave a comment

By ISAAC NICHOLAS

ORO Governor Garry Juffa has called on Prime Minister Peter O’Neill and the government to fast track the Independent Commission Against Corruption (ICAC) Bill to save costs of expensive Commissions of Inquiry.

“There have been so many inquiries. This is just another example of an inquiry that has cost the country substantial amount of money, in this instance K15 million.”

Governor Juffa said this during debate on a statement by PM O’Neill on the Special Agriculture Business Leases (SADLs) Commission of Inquiry interim report.

Mr Juffa, who is a trained investigator who worked for 16 years with Internal Revenue and Customs, said he had worked in a lot of investigation work.

“As an investigator I can tell you the process of investigation is not as costly as it has been in inquiries that have constantly been conducted and (their reports) tabled (in Parliament),” he said.

“I want to propose that the Bill that is put forward for the establishment of ICAC must be fast-tracked. That organisation can then coordinate such investigations, drawing from the existing resources like the Public Prosecutors Office, Police, Internal Revenue Commission, Customs and others to conduct investigations in a thorough manner,” said Mr Juffa.

Governor Juffa said this would save the people substantial amount of money and these inquiries would produce results in having people responsible brought before the courts, prosecuted and penalised accordingly.

He said from those investigations, recommendations would come out as to how to improve laws to protect the people from further exploitations.

Meanwhile, Kundiawa Gembogl MP, Tobias Kulang, stressed the need to protect the land and the environment for future generations.

“Land is our security. It is our hope for the future. When the extractive industries have exhausted the mineral, petroleum and the gas wealth on our land, what we will be left with is the land,” Mr Kulang said.

“The point is straight forward- our land is not for sale,” he said.

“Papa God lo ting ting blo em taim blo wokim graun em pinis, em nonap wokim wanpla mo graun, mi tokim yu. You can pray and fast, but Papa God nonap wokim wanpla mo graun. (God has created land and he will not create more land. You can pray and fast but God will not create any more land).

“Please do not sell your land and your children’s future,” Mr Kulang pleaded.

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