Home > Corruption, Papua New Guinea > Transparency International is indeed a joke in PNG!

Transparency International is indeed a joke in PNG!

December 14, 2011 Leave a comment Go to comments

Recent criticism of Transparency International for not tackling the Australians over their laundering of the proceeds of corruption in PNG and TI’s neo-colonial ‘Corruption Perception Index’ led to this illuminating exchange via email.

First Paul Barker – in defence of TI PNG

TI’s local chapter in PNG cannot go chasing much if it cannot afford to pay its staff!! Yes of course the proceeds of various crimes in PNG end up in Australia; all the more reason for Australia to help fund the local transparency chapter to probe activities at the PNG end, and that various parties (including TI here, but especially authorities and NGO transparency organisations in Australia) probe and are pushed to probe the Australian (NZ, Singapore, Samoan etc ends!! Cheap shots at TIPNG don’t really help!

Then David Joshua Martin in response

Apart from its annual Walk Against Corruption, what has TI really done? TI(PNG) is  – frustratingly – a reflection of the people within the organization –  a herd  of timid  sheep who can’t  even stand up and confront  corruption in its ugliest.  TI(PNG)  can’t to anything meaningful because that herd of pampered citizens don’t really understand the impacts of corruption in rural Papua New Guinea. How can we expect  those within TI(PNG) to have the will to speak out for the rest of us when they themselves don’t understand what it is like to live without water  and sanitation  in Kaugere or Two mile hill?

How can we expect TI(PNG) to probe into  the  theft of funds when very few of them actually know what it is like to watch a mother die of childbirth complications in Simbu and the Southern Highlands?  Papua New Guineans aren’t just statistics. My mother and father, my brother and sister aren’t just the “80 percent of people” who don’t live in urban areas. Every year, TI(PNG) releases “wonderful” figures  of Papua New Guinea’s corruption perception rating that sees this great country of mine slip further into the quagmire of international disrepute.

Yet, when asked about corruption perception ratings, TI(PNG) has always distanced itself  from the manner in which data has been put together. Not that they are responsible, of course.

Sure, nice looking posters on billboards look good and serve a public relations purpose. But the bottom line is do Papua New Guineans pay attention to it? NO!  A template that works in another country doesn’t always work here.

The point is that  TI(PNG) will not probe  the activities of cash siphoning politicians and public servants at the PNG end or anywhere else. Where in their history do you see that? If they even thought about it, it would have been done by now. I would say, Mr. Barker, (and other TI status quo supporters) that you’re being a bit naïve (or protective). Their record speaks for itself.

Get real, protecting them when they don’t produce doesn’t help.

  1. Disgusted at TI
    December 21, 2011 at 7:49 am

    TI-PNG is led by a bunch of conservative people, afraid to take risks. Such organisations NEVER become agents for change. TI-PNG has either never heard of the term “civil disobedience” or runs away from that term as if it were evil and wrong, even though every single world famous agent of change against injustice (Mandela, etc) used civil disobedience again and again to get their way. You can’t tell me that South Africa or India during their times of struggle was any less likely to explode into riots and looting than PNG is today. I guess TI-PNG are afraid that the kongkongs might lose their illegal tucker shops if a civil disobedience march ended up stimulating a riot. It doesn’t matter, civil disobedience can be constructed in ways other than marches, but TI-PNG doesn’t want to go there – they are TOO AFRAID! Please pngexposed, I hope that you make sure TI-PNG gets these messages so they’re clear that THINKING PEOPLE now see them for what they are, an ineffective blob calling itself an NGO but not acting in the best spirit that NGOs of the past have shown.

  2. PK
    March 6, 2012 at 12:25 am

    Elected leaders, senior officials and most the run of the mill civil servants will never be intimidated by TI or feel hounded by the right-wing bunch that run it. It is a well-to-do bunch that start their day with a nice hot shower, a hearty breakfast browsing the day’s PC or TN, then engaging in holier-than-thou discussions including pointing accusing fingers at any pollie they choose. They are like birds of a feather! They speak with a certain dipthong; their press releases are one liners and aren’t ever inventive or intuitive but simply agree to and support what the OC says on a particular matter or what others in the same corral say on the subject of corruption, weak, elusive or devious leadership. Now that AUSAID has graciously included TI in its funding, some its deployees up the pecking order may be taking home something that’s probably comparable to what the backbench MPs used to earn before they became extinct from Parliament in the mid to late 80’s.. The point that elected leaders often make against the criticism of TI is that it has no statutory standing or mandate to represent the civil society or any society in PNG. A larger point is, elected leaders are not answerable to TI, especially when the orgainisation is being propped up by Australia.

  3. Las Island
    March 6, 2012 at 8:00 am

    “Transparency International is indeed a joke in PNG!”….sad! liability to tax payers!

  1. May 22, 2012 at 10:37 pm

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