News C

PNG award to Maxwell Hayes

Christy King receives Star of Courage

Stuart Inder, MBE

Crocodile Prize 2015

Kiap DVD: Stories behind the medal

Project 150

Symposium speakers and update

Crocodile Prize winners

Results of raffle

Reading for a Better Education

Symposium sponsored by Oil Search

2014 Annual General Meeting

Ordination of Father Neville Yun

PNGAA Symposium 2014

Joe Nitsche

DVD: Telling the stories of kiaps

Vale Lorna Johnston

Tribute to Gordon Steege

Kiaps awarded Police Overseas Service Medal

2013 AGM

Senior Australian of the Year

Award to Sean Dorney

2012 Crocodile Prize literary awards

Max Uechtritz at the Oceanic Art Society

2011 South-east Queensland ex-kiap reunion

Spirit Faces display at the Australian Museum

Queen Mary 2 in Rabaul

Landslide at Nogoloi

Resignation of President

70th Anniversary presentation on Rabaul and the Montevideo Maru


PNG award to Maxwell Hayes

Max was awarded the Queen's Diamond Jubilee Medal 1952-2012. The citation was for services to the Constabulary, in particular the history of the Commissioned Officers during the post-war period, 1945-1975.

Max joined the Royal Papua New Guinea Constabulary as a direct entry at commissioned officer rank of Sub-Inspector in 1959 following his service in the Royal Australian Air Force. During his 15 years in the force, he served widely in Papua New Guinea and held a variety of positions before he was retrenched at the rank of acting Superintendent in 1974 during the Australian Government's transition to PNG Independence in 1975.

Contemporaneously with his service in RPNGC, he was a member of ‘B’ Company, Rabaul, for about two years but resigned when Superintendent Jack Carroll required him to spend more time on police duties.

For many years he has researched the history of his force from 1888 until the Constabulary centenary in 1988. Prior to 1968 RPNGC was one of only three Queen's ‘Royal’ police forces in the western world being granted the Royal Warrant in August 1939.

Christy King receives Star of Courage

Christy King was presented with the Star of Courage bravery award by the Governor-General, Peter Cosgrove, on 30 March 2015.

She was cited for the award, one of the country’s highest decorations, for displaying conspicuous courage in circumstances of great peril in leading trekkers to safety after the Black Cat Track attack in PNG.

A trekking party led by Christie was attacked by men armed with machetes and a shotgun. Three men were killed, seven wounded and the trekkers were beaten and robbed when ambushed at Banis Donki on September 10 2013.

Christy described the attack as a frenzied bloody massacre which made no sense. She immediately identified herself as the group leader and negotiated and pleaded with the attackers to stop their assault.

Although she had been clubbed with a machete she organised first aid, medical assistance and evacuation after the attacker ransacked the campsite and fled.

She led the trekkers who could walk down the mountain for five hours, mostly in darkness, taking the most vulnerable position herself.

Christie paid tribute to the 19 Papua New Guinea porters on the trek, the trekkers and the rescue team.

[29 May 2015

Stuart Inder, MBE (7 November 1926 - 30 January 2015)

Friend and confidante of the Pacific Islands, Stuart Inder, MBE, has passed away in Sydney, aged 88 years.

As an ABC reporter in Port Moresby through the early 50s, Inder was there in the early days of the Shangri La discovery, Star Mountains. He was there for PNG Independence too. His strong connection with PNG was reinforced through approximately 20 years as advisor and mentor with the editing of Una Voce through editors Doug Parrish, Marie Clifton-Bassett and Andrea Williams. Stuart edited the highly sought book of the Papua New Guinea Association of Australia, Tales of Papua New Guinea, now out-of-print.

In the mid 50s Stuart Inder joined Robbie Robson at Pacific Publications, owner of Suva based Fiji Times and Pacific Islands Monthly (PIM). With Judy Tudor he was co-editor of PIM from 1957 to 1964 and then sole editor until 1975: a position later upgraded as publisher and then manager under The Herald & Weekly Times. By the early 80s he took over the editorship of the Pacific Islands Year Book from Judy Tudor, a rich compendium of information valued by academics and Pacific business leaders.

Stuart Inder's unassuming style belied his sharp mind and sense of humour which resulted in perceptive editorials. He was always a great listener with a door that was always open. He was always extraordinarily kind and generous with his time and knowledge gained from his vast experience.

Stuart Inder was a legend in Australia and in the Pacific, and made an enormous contribution to the Papua New Guinea Association of Australia.  Our thoughts are with his family.

[9 February 2015

Crocodile Prize 2015

The Papua New Guinea Association of Australia granted $5000 to the Crocodile Prize national literary contest to underpin the Prize’s publishing program in 2014 and has committed to providing the same amount for 2015.

The PNGAA decided to sponsor the production of the Crocodile Prize Anthology of the best PNG creative writing, published each year to coincide with the Crocodile Prize awards.

In late 2014, more than 1000 copies of the Anthology were distributed mainly to schools and libraries throughout PNG.

The PNGAA sees a major part of its role as being to support friendly and positive relationships between the peoples of PNG and Australia.

Further information at:

[2 December 2014

Kiap DVD: Stories behind the medal

The Kiap tradition began in the early 20th Century and continued after World War Two. In this film, Kiaps tell their stories of living and working in Papua New Guinea. There is also footage of the ceremony at Parliament House, Canberra, where Kiaps were awarded the Police Overseas Service Medal.

The DVD is now available. For details, see here.

[24 September 2014, updated 2 March 2015

Project 150

One of the Association's current objectives is 'Education' and we have recently developed a history supplement to complement the current Year 10 Australian History curriculum. "Project 150" is about giving secondary students the opportunity to learn an Australian perspective of the Pacific in WW2. We are currently looking for 150 teachers to take part in the trial, which will include lesson plans, background notes, worksheets, resources and a copy of the DVD Some Came Home. The flyer here outlines the trial: please share with any history teachers that you think maybe interested in the trial. To register you can fill out the form which is here.

[7 August 2014

Symposium speakers and update

Additional information is now available about the Dinner and Symposium and the Symposium speakers.

[24 August 2014

Crocodile Prize winners

The Papua New Guinea Association of Australia Inc (PNGAA) has proudly supported the publishing program for the 2014 Crocodile Prize Anthology and is now delighted to congratulate the winners of this year’s awards.

The 2014 Crocodile Prize offers a variety of awards for short stories, essays and poetry, with the best published in an annual Anthology.

Winners in the Crocodile Prize each takes home a trophy and a K5,000 prize.

The awards will be presented to the following winners on Thursday 18 September at the Australian High Commission in Port Moresby.

1. Cleland Family Heritage Writing Award: Arnold Mundua
2. Buk Bilong Pikinini Award for Children’s Writing: Iriani Wanma
3. Ok Tedi Mining Book of the Year: Brokenville by Leonard Fong Roka
4. People’s Award for Short Stories: Agnes Maineke
5. Kina Securities Award for Poetry: Diddie Kinamun Jackson
6. PNG Chamber of Mines & Petroleum Award for Essays & Journalism: Kela Kapkora Sil Bolkin
7. Ok Tedi Mining Award for Lifetime Contribution to PNG Literature: Sir Paulias Matane

Keith Jackson, co-founder of the prize, writes:

The Crocodile Prize, Papua New Guinea’s literary contest, is over for this year and the PNGAA has played a vital role in its success, underwriting a publishing program that has seen well over 1,000 copies of the annual anthology distributed throughout the country.

Books will be distributed to universities, colleges, libraries and secondary schools in PNG.

Capturing the great diversity of Papua New Guinea and its people, this year’s Anthology had over 600 entries from 130 writers in seven categories including heritage stories, children’s stories, short stories, essays, poetry, the first ever award for book of the year, and the annual award for recognition of lifetime literary achievement. 

168 stories, poems and essays are represented in the Anthology which is over 500 pages.

Editor and co-founder of the Crocodile Prize, Phil Fitzpatrick, in a fascinating Foreword, analyses how events in resource-rich PNG are influencing an emerging creative writing culture.

Reviewing the entries, providing feedback and editing, is achieved through a band of mentors skilled in their craft who do it through a labour of love. They, too, deserve our thanks.  In an interview with Liam Cockrane, Keith Jackson asks:

The big question still remains, what are we going to do in future to make sure this is a sustainable enterprise within PNG?

The Anthology is available in hard-copy and e-book versions from Amazon.

The Crocodile Prize Anthology 2014, Phil Fitzpatrick (ed), $US13.50 (postage c $6.00), 512 pages, can be obtained from Amazon.

[24 August 2014

Results of raffle

We congratulate the following winners of the PNGAA/PNGVR raffle drawn recently at the Brisbane Air Niugini offices: First Prize, flights for two including three nights' accommodation in Rabaul: Ticket No. 11386 - Brian & Nancy Jones; Second Prize, the Centenary Dinner and Symposium in Sydney: Ticket No. 14261 - Sean Dorney

[8 August 2014

Reading for a Better Education

Information about this important initiative by ex-employees of the Commonwealth Bank is here.

[2 August 2014

Symposium sponsored by Oil Search

The Papua New Guinea Association of Australia (PNGAA) is delighted to have as a major sponsor for its inaugural Symposium in September a PNG company that has had very close connections with Australia for 85 years. Oil Search has been very active in stimulating the economic growth of PNG but is now actively engaged in improving the health in the local communities. There is a strong connection between the well-being of the community and the ability to grow economically. Oil Search is playing a critical role in improving the physical health of the people in the villages through it ongoing health care programs. We are very fortunate to have the Managing Director, Mr Peter Botten, to present his programs to us during the coming event.

Further information about the 2014 Centenary Dinner and Symposium can be found here.

[23 July 2014

PNGAA Symposium 2014

The PNGAA Symposium is to be held at NSW Parliament House on 17 and 18 September 2014. Updated information is now available here.

[22 May 2014



2014 Annual General Meeting

The 2014 Annual General Meeting was held on 4 May 2014. It approved a change to the PNGAA Consitution to increase the number of Committee members by two. This reflects the increasing activities of the Association.

The AGM also received the President's Report (available to all readers), and the Treasurer's Report and Annual Accounts (members only).

[22 May 2014

Ordination of Father Neville Yun

Neville Yun (42) makes history as the first New Guinea Chinese Catholic man to be ordained as a priest in Australia.

He was born in Port Moresby, and went to Australia with his parents in 1975. After a career in I.T. and then in social services, he commenced studies for the priesthood. He was ordained at St Stephen's Catholic Cathedral in Brisbane on 29 November 2013. He is now serving at St Mary's Catholic Parish in Ipswich.

[7 March 2014

PNGAA Symposium

The PNGAA Symposium, "From Pacific WW1 battlefield to Pacific Powers", will be held on 17-18 September 2014. Further information is here.

[22 December 2013

Joe Nitsche

Information has been received of the passing of Joe Nitsche on the morning of 22 November 2014. Joe served DASF in the Eastern Highlands from 1957 to 1984. He has been a member of PNGAA for almost 30 years, and spent almost 2 decades as a member of the Committee, including a term as Secretary.

[22 November 2013

DVD: Telling the stories of Kiaps

The PNGAA and Gum Leaves Productions are co-operating to produce a DVD about the contribution of kiaps in Papua New Guinea, and are seeking contributions from interested people or organisations. Further details are here.

[22 November 2013

Vale Lorna Johnson

Lorna (Whyte) Johnston passed away on 30 September 2013, aged 98 years. She was an outstanding Australian who inspired so many with her courage and joy for life. As an Army nurse Lorna was taken prisoner by the Japanese in January 1942 in Kokopo, East New Britain, PNG, and endured over three years captivity in Japan. A true Australian, Lorna's spirit of forgiveness was heartfelt.

Lorna was a generous supporter of the Rabaul and Montevideo Maru Memorial from the start, always remembering those who had been in Rabaul with her. Along with Sister Berenice Twohill, Lorna inspired the ABC telemovie Sisters of War. What a tremendous ambassador for Australia!

Our special thoughts go to her family.

Lorna's funeral will be held in Auckland, New Zealand, on Friday 4 October 2013.

More information about her life is in this article from The Aucklander.

[2 October 2013

Tribute to Gordon Steege

Gordon SteegeTribute to Air Commodore Gordon Henry Steege, DSO, DFC, born 30 October 1917, died 1 September 2013

Gordon Steege was undoubtedly the most outstanding airman of them all. Already a Pilot Officer in the RAAF at the outbreak of World War II, he served as adjutant with 11 Squadron based at Port Moresby until May 1940 and sailed with 3 Squadron to the Middle East. As Flight Lieutenant, he was Wilf Arthur’s flight commander.

In December 1940, flying an antique Glouster Gladiator biplane, he was credited with three confirmed ‘kills’, two ‘probables’ and one enemy aircraft ‘damaged’. In 1941, initially with 3 Squadron, and then as Commanding Officer of 450 Squadron he was credited with another five confirmed ‘kills’ and four ‘damaged’. Returning to Australia in 1942, he was promoted Wing Commander and commanded 73 Wing (three squadrons of Kittyhawks and one each of Spitfires, Beaufighters and Bostons) at Kiriwina, leading the Kittyhawk squadrons in strafing operations. He took the Kittyhawks and Spitfires to the Admiralty Islands in March 1944, where he was awarded a DSO and promoted Group Captain.

He was Director of Operations at RAAF HQ, when he resigned his commission to become a Patrol Officer and was posted to Esa’ala. He attended ASOPA for six months in 1947, was posted to Kairuku, under ADO Kevin Atkinson in January 1948, to Madang and Bogia in late 1948, and to Manus, as ADO, in mid 1950 from where he resigned because of family ill health.

He rejoined the RAAF as a Wing Commander and commanded 77 Squadron in Korea. Promoted Group Captain, he commanded the base at Canberra, was the Australian Military Adviser’s Representative at the Military Planning Office, SEATO HQ, Bangkok, 1959-60 and then, for four years, Director, Joint Service Plans, at RAAF HQ Canberra. After being promoted Air Commodore he commanded RAAF bases in Australia and Malaysia before being appointed Senior Air Staff Officer, RAAF Headquarters, Operational Command: the position he held till retirement.

Gordon, accompanied by his wife Jennifer, returned to New Guinea in 2007, to visit Jeanette Leahy at Zenag, and to revisit his old haunts at Madang and Manus.

He is survived by Jennifer, son Peter and daughter, Diana.

[9 September 2013

Kiaps awarded Police Overseas Service Medal

The Minister for Home Affairs and Minister for Justice today awarded the Police Overseas Service Medal to 55 "Kiaps": the former Australian members of the Royal Papua New Guinea Constabulary between 1949 and 1973.

From the end of World War II until independence in 1975, it is estimated that around 2000 young Australian men served as patrol officers, or "kiaps" in the then Territories of Papua and New Guinea. A career as a patrol officer required the officers to juggle the multiple roles of ambassador, policeman, explorer, farmer, engineer and anthropologist.

As part of the law enforcement structure in the territory these young Australians patrolled vast areas on foot with the help of an indigenous police force and established the fundamentals of rule of law in the emerging nation.

"These Australians served as officers of the Royal Papua New Guinea Constabulary, greatly contributing to the stability and development of the region," Mr Clare said.

"They have never been properly recognised for the work they did to maintain order in Papua New Guinea. The ceremony today is righting a wrong and providing long overdue recognition of the important work they did."

This recognition comes after a community campaign to increase recognition and public awareness of the role 'Kiaps' played in providing security to our region.

"I pay tribute to Mr Chris Viner-Smith and his team for their efforts over many years," Mr Clare said.

The combined efforts of these Australian law enforcement officers helped the Territory recover from the impact of World War II and inevitably laid the foundations for the establishment of the independent national of Papua New Guinea.

The Police Overseas Service Medal complements the Australian Service Medal, which is awarded to members of the Australian Defence Force and the Humanitarian Overseas Service Medal.

The full text of the Minister's speech is here.

[19 July 2013

2013 Annual General Meeting

The 2013 Annual General Meeting was held on Sunday 28 April. The Acting President's report is available to all readers here. Members can also view the Financial Satements for 2012 and the Minutes of the 2013 AGM.

Senior Australian of the Year


The Papua New Guinea Association of Australian congratulates Dr Ian Maddocks, Senior Australian of the Year for 2013. Internationally recognised South Australian palliative care specialist Emeritus Professor Dr Ian Maddocks still cares for the terminally ill and continues to supervise post graduate students. He was a specialist physician in the Australian Administration of Papua New Guinea for 14 years and, in 1971, became Foundation Dean of the Faculty of Medicine at the University of PNG.

Dr Ian Maddocks recently published a book, Pari Hanua. Dr Roy Scragg wrote a joint review with Singsing, sutures and sorcery by Dr Anthony Radford which was published in the December 2012 Una Voce.

About Pari Hanua, Scragg writes: Dr Ian Maddocks has written the history of the Motuan village that accepted and entranced him for six years. In Pari Hanua, he has described the history of Pari and the Motu people based on oral history, post colonial records and his personal observations. He has recorded the impact of western society on every aspect of community life over the past 130 years and illustrated it from photographic records. It is a story that every village near a centre in PNG could replicate. See the full review.

Award to Sean Dorney

Congratulations to Sean Dorney, ABC Australia Network's Pacific Correspondent, who recently received the Australian Council for International Development's inaugural ACFID Media Award for his lifetime commitment to reporting on Papua New Guinea and the Pacific.

For the past 38 years, Sean's work has involved covering news and events in the Pacific.He spent 20 years living in Papua New Guinea, 17 of those as the ABC's PNG Correspondent. Dorney returned to Australia in 1999 to become the ABC's Pacific Correspondent based in Brisbane, reporting for ABC News, Australia Network and Radio Australia.

"I'm delighted to receive this award because I don't think we as Australians really appreciate the crucial role that so many of our own people play in trying to help foster positive development in our own neighbourhood. The stories need to be told," Dorney said.

ABC Director of News Kate Torney said, 'The magnificent contribution that Sean has made and continues to make with his reporting of stories in the Pacific is unmatched. His commitment to the region and his tireless enthusiasm and work ethic as a video journalist for Australia Network and his reporting for Radio Australia, makes him very deserving of such an award. It is wonderful that Sean has been recognised for his work by the Australian Council for International Development."

The first of Dorney's three postings to Papua New Guinea began in 1974, just before PNG independence. In 1979 he returned to Port Moresby as the ABC correspondent, but was expelled in 1984 by the then Foreign Minister, Rabbie Namaliu following a dispute between the PNG government and the ABC over the screening of an interview with Irian Jayan rebel leader, James Nyaro, by the Four Corners program.

Sean returned to Port Moresby as the ABC's correspondent in 1987 and in 1991 the government of Prime Minister Sir Rabbie Namaliu awarded him an MBE for "Services to Broadcasting and Sport".  For 18 months in 1991/92 Sean was seconded to the PNG National Broadcasting Commission, as an in-country project manager for an AusAid/ABC assistance project.

In 1997 Sean led the ABC's radio and television coverage of the Sandline mercenary crisis and in 1998 was awarded the Walkley Award for Radio News reporting for his coverage of the tsunami that struck PNG in July 1998.

\Sean returned to Australia in 1999 to take up the job of Pacific Correspondent based in Brisbane. In 2000 he completed a two-part television documentary marking the 25th anniversary of PNG independence and spanning his own quarter of a century involvement with the country.

Sean has covered seven PNG elections, the most recent one this year. As he said at the time, "No matter how much time you spend in Papua New Guinea you can still be baffled by the next development".

Sean has also written two books on Papua New Guinea affairs.

[29 October 2012

2012 Crocodile Prize literary awards

The Crocodile Prize is named after Vincent Eri's pioneering 1970 novel The Crocodile. The competition was first run in 2011 when an anthology of the best work was also published. This year the entries have quadrupled and the anthology runs to over 380 pages.

The competition was initiated by PNGAA members Keith Jackson and Phil Fitzpatrick.

As a result of the competition the Papua New Guinea Society of Writers, Editors and Publishers (SWEP) was formed. Part of the role of the society will be to take the competition into 2013 and the years beyond.

The first Annual General Meeting of the society was held in Port Moresby on 10 September. A Writers' Forum was run the following day and an awards ceremony and reception were held in the evening at the Australian High Commission.

The guest speaker at the Writers' Forum was Drusilla Modjeska, the author of the recent novel The Mountain, which is set in 1970s Papua New Guinea. Another guest was Bob Cleland, the author of The Big Road about the building of the Highlands Highway and sponsor of the heritage category of the awards.

The awards night was opened and concluded by the Australian High Commissioner, Ian Kemish. The keynote speaker at the awards ceremony was the Hon. Boka Kondra, the Minister for Tourism, Arts and Culture. The Minister of Education, the Hon. Paru Aihi, also delivered a speech on the night. Among the other distinguished guests was Dame Carol Kidu.

The inaugural President of the society is Amanda Donigi, with Jimmy Drekore as Vice-President, Ruth Moiam as Secretary, Gina Samar as Treasurer and Committee Members David Gonol, Regina Dorum, Steve Ilave and David Kitchnoge.

Award winners received a Crocodile Trophy and a cheque for K5,000. The winners of this year’s awards are as follows.

The winner of the Steamships Prize for Short Stories (Russell Soaba Award) was C V Vada for her story The Fan.

The winner of the PNG Society of Writers, Editors and Publishers Prize for Poetry (John Kasaipwalova Award) was Michael Dom for his sonnet I Met a Pig Farmer the Other Day.

The winner of the PNG Chamber of Mines and Petroleum Prize for Essays and Journalism (Sean Dorney Award) was Emma Wakpi for her essay The Haunting.

The winner of the Cleland Family Prize for Heritage Writing was Lorraine Basse for her story Barasi—the Manam Way.

The winner of the Ex PNG Chalkies Yokomo Prize for Student Writing was Angeline Low for her short story Going Through the Unimaginable. Student encouragement awards sponsored by AustAsia Pacific Health Services, which also sponsored the Writers' Forum, were given to Axel Rice, Jeremiah Toni and Kayla Reimann.

The winner of the Ok Tedi Mining Prize for Women’s Literature (Dame Carol Kidu Award) was Imelda Yabara for her stort story My Name is Sandy and her poems In Bed with Me and Way Out of Reach.

The British American Tobacco (PNG) Prize for Lifetime Contribution to Literature (Sir Paulias Matane Award) went to Russell Soaba.

Copies of the anthology can be ordered from the SWEP secretary Ruth Moiam at the Australian High Commission in Port Moresby ( ).  The anthology costs AUD$25.00 plus $6.50 postage.

For anyone interested in Papua New Guinean literature and supporting it into the future the anthology is a very good buy.  You will be impressed by the high standard of writing and the uniquely Papua New Guinean flavour that it conveys.

Max Uechtritz at the Oceanic Art Society

Max Uechtritz has been something of the family historian, seeking out, gathering and piecing together documents, photos, letters and books from around the world about Richard and Phebe Parkinson, his great-grandparents, who exchanged and sold perhaps thousands of artefacts to major museums in America and Europe. He will pass on some of that research to the OAS at the next lecture, at the Australian Museum on Wednesday 12 September. Refreshments at 6.30 for a 7 pm start. PNGAA members are very welcome to attend to this meeting. Please use the William Street entrance.

OAS members $10, non-members $15, students with ID $5. Bookings essential: Email , or telephone Robin Hodgson 02 9332 3984
After a career as a foreign correspondent, Max was Director of News and Current Affairs at the ABC, Network News Director at Channel 9, Editor in chief of Ninemsn and Director of Programmes (documentaries and current affairs) at Al Jazeera English. Currently Max is an independent television producer making mostly historical programs for Channel 7. These include the Lost Diggers series last year on a cache of 4000 WW1 glass plate negatives, which had been missing for nearly a century that they found in a French barn. By the time this comes around they will have aired a documentary on the 70th anniversary of the midget submarine attack on Sydney.

[12 August 2012

2011 South-east Queensland ex-kiap reunion

Photos from this reunion are available on the Ex-kiap web site.

Spirit Faces display at the Australian Museum

From ancient to modern times, people of all cultures have worn masks: to hide, have fun, for decoration or protection, to transform themselves or assume different identities, and as part of important religious and funerary rituals.

Spirit Faces, which opened on 11 February 2012 at the Australian Museum in Sydney, takes you through a selection of Melanesian masks from New Guinea, New Caledonia and Vanuatu.

Discover the different functions of the masks, their diverse styles and range of materials used for construction, and the stories associated with them.

Some were used in performances for rituals, social events and festivals and commemoration at funerary rites, and there are others whose true meaning we don't yet know.

The exhibition will run until late 2012.

Queen Mary 2 in Rabaul

The Queen Mary 2 visited Rabaul on 12 March, and rather dwarfed the town.


Landslide at Nogoloi

A landslide between Nogoloi and Hides 4 Junction, near the main PNG LNG construction site, has smothered two villages, covering much of the settlements in mud.

The tragedy happened in the early hours of the morning as people slept.

Witnesses said the landslide area was about a kilometre long and a few hundred metres wide.

It is understood that everyone living near the road and on the hills got swept away, including two PMV buses packed with passengers travelling back from Komo.

ExxonMobil's Esso Highlands unit said in a statement that the landslide had blocked a key access road and the accident had prompted the US oil giant Exxon Mobil to stop work at its nearby PNG liquefied natural gas project in the Hides and Komo area.

Disaster management teams have moved into the area to assess the damage.

Info from:

[26 January 2012

Resignation of President

Dennis Doyle has recently resigned from the office of President and from the Management Committee to pursue other interests.  The PNGAA thanks him for his contribution and wishes him well. In the meantime Andrea Williams has been appointed by the Management Committee of the PNGAA as Chairperson.

70th Anniversary presentation on Rabaul and the Montevideo Maru

Come and join Aurora Expeditions and find out more about our voyages to Papua New Guinea. Our experienced Expedition Staff will provide a great insight to the destination and local attractions, whilst a member of the Rabual and Montevideo Maru Society will speak of the upcoming 70th anniversary of the Battle of Rabaul and Montevideo Maru. Please RSVP to Olivia Dwyer at or call 02 92 52 1033.

Date: 3 November 2011
Time: 6-8pm
Where: Aurora Expeditions offices. Level 3, 13-15 Bridge St, Sydney, 2000.

Special 70th Anniversary Commemorative Voyages are planned for April 2012. There is more information in this brochure.