Friday, March 1, 2013

Kubalia University Centre

In the last 25 years I have been teaching at UPNG I never would have thought UPNG Open College centre would open in the Kubalia district.

If I was not part of the official party I would have jumped up and danced the great Lomonjo, a traditional dance singsing only performed in the Yangoru Sausia Electorate in the East Sepik Province. The Lomonjo staged in Kubalia High School was for the official opening of the Kanauki University Centre, which serves the people of the Kubalia district, also known as the Numbo-Sausia Local Level Government Council.  

The member of Yangoru Sausia Electorate and Minister of Commerce, Trade, and Industry, Honorable Richard Maru wasted no time in getting services to his electorate.

The honorable Minister had invited the University of Papua New Guinea to set up a UPNG Open College centre in Kubalia district to encourage the development of human resources in the area.

Community leaders spoke about the importance of human resource development in the Kubalia area. The leaders wanted to see more educated people from their district. Far too long Kubalia had remained in the backwaters with few educated and top elites occupying powerful positions in society.

The people of Yangoru Sausia are excited with the momentum their member has created since his election several months ago. They know they want development. They know they will get services delivered. They know their leader is putting his development funds in the various projects initiated in the community or those the member had initiated. 

The University of Papua New Guinea wasted no time is responding to the Minister’s invitation. Through the UPNG Open College, headed by Professor Samuel Haihuie, the preparation for the official opening of the Kanauki University Centre began without haste.

I travelled with Professor Haihuie as the official representatives of the University of Papua New Guinea. I represented the Vice Chancellor in my new capacity as the Director of University Academic Audit Unit for the occasion.  The event was important on both the professional and personal level.

At the professional level we were proud to bring university education to the villages and communities, right to their doorsteps. Bringing university education to our people in the rural areas remains one of the most transformative experiences for many of our people.

On a personal level Professor Haihuie and myself come from the Yangoru Sausia Electorate as well. Returning home in an official capacity to our community was like a great Home Coming event.

Honorable David Arore (left) and Honorable Richard Maru (right)
In our speeches at official opening we acknowledged the Honourable Richard Maru’s vision and initiative to bring real development to his people. We also assured the Honorable Member and the people of Yangoru Sausia that the University of Papua New Guinea will remain committed to providing quality education to the people. UPNG will continue to offer its programs and develop the centres as long as the people respect and look after the properties belonging to the university.

The special honored guest for the official opening of the Kanauki University Centre was the Member for Ijivitari, Honorable David Arore, who is the Minister for Higher Education, Science, and Technology. Minister Arore was excited with this initiative and development project of his fellow Minister Honourable Richard Maru.

Minister Arore spoke about O’Neil-Dion Government’s commitment to the rural people, the grassroots, and the people of PNG. Minister Arore stressed that the government is committed to the development of all societies in Papua New Guinea. 

Honorable David Arore was invited by his fellow colleague Honorable Richard Maru to officiate the opening of the Kanauki University Centre in the Kubalia District. The future of university open colleges is that a PNG Open University system might be possible.

Sharing those moments with Minister Maru and Minister Arore will remain special to me. Witnessing the key projects that the Member for Yangoru Sausia and Minister for Commerce, Trade, and Industry, Honorable Richard Maru had planned for his electorate begin is applauded.

The people of Yangoru Sausia Electorate have a leader who walks on his own path without needing to follow those before him. Even I am all admiration for the new member for Yangoru Sausia, Honorable Richard Maru, who wasted no time in getting developmental projects into the electorate. Within six to seven months of being elected into office Honorable Richard Maru has done more for his people in a short span of time than anyone I know.

To top it off for the month of February’s activities in the Yangoru Sausia Electorate the Prime Minister of Papua New Guinea, Honorable Peter O’Neill visited the electorate where Minister Maru is initiating rice and cattle ranch projects in the Great Sepik Plains. The Prime Minister also opened the BSP Yangoru Branch and the Police Mobile Squad Housing scheme in Yangoru.

Setting the pace for development in his electorate, Member and Minister, Honorable Richard Maru also thanked the people of Tuonumbu Village for giving 40 hactares of land to the State to build a Technical and Vocational College. It is good to see people willing to work in partnership with the government to bring real tangible development to the communities.

Honorable Richard Maru at the proposed site
for technical and vocational
college at Tuonumbu.
The people of Tuonumbu thanked their Member and Minister for accepting their offer to built a Technical and Vocational College in honor of one of their sons who was killed in Rabaul during his training there.

As a witness to these developments in Kubalia I appreciate and value the good Member and Honourable Minister in getting things done in all the districts, LLGS, and generally in the Electorate of Yangoru Sausia. That’s what I call a leader, rather than someone who follows a leader.  

It is said what you do now will produce the kind of results you want in future. In that expression I see what Honorable Richard Maru is doing now will bring very positive and bountiful rewards for the people of Yangoru Sausia and the East Sepik Province in future.

Well done, Honorable Richard Maru! Your people are singing and dancing to your tune. 

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