Tuesday, April 30, 2013


DESPITE the rain in the evening and night yesterday, today it was sunny and fine in Port Moresby. Having to get to the workplace quickly because I had a good number of things to do, I flagged down a taxi and took that 4km ride. As we were travelling along a certain part of the neighbourhood, we saw some kids throwing empty soft drink cans onto the road to be flattened by the tyres of vehicles travelling along.
I commented on how an old-time driver for Ela Motors (Wewak) once told me about the old days when nothing … and he meant nothing … was thrown onto public roads – and that included grass cut from the road side.

I remember him telling me that when the Australians were running the country (before Independence in 1975), roads were kept free from any object or substance. I did my own thinking and deduced that the bits and pieces of rubbish thrown onto the road could, in the long run, ruin the road, and would cost taxpayers millions of kina.

Photo: Another view of Port Moresby down town on a weekday. - Picture taken by an Aussie friend

Well, one comment about this and that led the driver to tell me about “bad” police officers collecting road fines and applying the money to their own use. 
The cab driver questioned the police officers on some of those occasions: “Why do you people cheat us taxi drivers and others and collect those fines only to pocket them?”

Most of the officers never had much to say except: “The money we collect, we never take home to our families. We use it without their knowledge.”

The cab driver said he knew that those who took the money home to be shared by their family members were really cursing their families. “It is cursed money,” he said.

I made a parallelism to politicians. I said: “The money they steal from the public coffers and use it to benefit their family only brings a curse on them. Sure they can fare well for years or decades. But watch and you will see the curse coming. And sadly, it will be their children or grandchildren who will live with the fruits of the curse long after the politicians disappear.”

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