By Nicole Haley, Ron J May
The Southern Highlands is one in every of Papua New Guinea’s so much resource-rich provinces, yet for a few years the province has been riven through clash. Longstanding inter-group rivalries, in short put aside in the course of the colonial interval, were compounded via festival for the advantages supplied through the trendy nation and through combating over the distribution of returns from the various significant mining and petroleum initiatives positioned in the province or impinging upon it. Deaths from many of the conflicts during the last decade quantity within the hundreds of thousands. because of inter-group scuffling with, criminality and vandalism, a couple of companies have withdrawn from the province. Roadblocks and ambushes have made commute risky in lots of elements and expatriate missionaries and reduction staff have left. Many public servants have deserted their posts with the end result that kingdom prone aren't supplied. Corruption is rife. Police are frequently reluctant to behave simply because they're outnumbered and outgunned. This quantity brings jointly a couple of authors with deep adventure of the Southern Highlands to check the underlying dynamics of source improvement and clash within the province. Its fundamental goal is to supply a few heritage to contemporary occasions, however the authors additionally discover attainable methods to restricting the human and monetary bills of the continued clash and breakdown of governance.
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Additional info for Conflict and resource development in the southern highlands of Papua New Guinea
Absence of staff from their posts in district offices is understandable. Lack of law and order, lack of maintenance of offices, lack of office supplies and equipment, and, in some areas, occupation of housing and offices — or their removal — by customary landowners made work difficult. Receipt of salaries in much of the province became difficult with decline of transport and banking services. The Department of Personnel Management issued a special general order instructing government workers to return to their posts, or to have salaries cut.
The effectiveness of such administrative interaction depends on coordination of the work of central agencies and line departments, and the capacity and commitment of those agencies and departments. The response from some line departments, and especially the Department of Education, was strong. Other agencies, including the Department of Personnel Management, were unwilling or incapable of acting. Recommendations for activating referral agencies The plan as approved asked for accelerated preparation of prosecutions for well-documented cases of misappropriation.
More broadly, armed hold-ups and confrontation along the highway between Tari and Mendi, and animosity between Nipas and Hela, are an excuse for the Hela people, who occupy the western part of the province, to retain their weapons. The authors believe that the consequences of prolonged collapse of services and law and order in the SHP are drastic. SHP could continue a downward spiral in services, peace, infrastructure and commerce. Services such as health, education and transport, when provided, legitimate and support the government presence, and offer access to commercial opportunities for villagers.