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New tourism plan will provide vision and purpose

By Ishmael Palipal

Photo courtesy of Bougainville Project Updates Photo courtesy of Bougainville Project Updates

A significant shift in the approach to regional tourism has begun with the launch of the Buka Town Tourism Development Plan Initiative 2016-2020 at the Bel Isi Park, Buka Town, on Sunday 14 July.

The major aim of the initiative is to develop Buka town as a tourism hub in the region.

The launch saw the unveiling of the program billboard and the new Buka Urban Council logo.

The formation of the Solomon Seas Tourism Zone Initiative Committee was also announced, which will help develop other potential tourism sites on Bougainville and the region as a whole.

Tourism is one of the major revenue generators that Bougainville is looking to put a greater development focus on.

The autonomous region is seen has having many tourism attractions that both Papua New Guinean and international tourists would enjoy.

Potential areas for tourist activities include site seeing, village stays, hiking, island outing, fishing, bird watching, attending a traditional feast and cultural festivals.

All it needs is a more organized structure, with the establishment of industry bodies and avenues for greater exposure.

Present at the launch was the National Minister for Tourism, Arts and Culture, Hon. Tobias Kulang.

Mr Kulang emphasized that a strong cultural base should be built and for the region, with tourism bureaus should be set up for Central and South Bougainville with commitment from ABG.

He stated that potential sites still need to be developed in Bougainville need to be reliably accessible to be impressive and conducive for tourism.

Before the launch, Minister Kulang and a delegation, including MP for Central Bougainville Minister Jimmy Mirringtoro, ABG Minister for Economic Services Steven Suako and ABG Minister Community Development Robert Sawa, visited potential tourism sites in South Bougainville and Central Bougainville before heading to Buka.

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Kurai women want public transport to support their labour

By Tevu Tenasi


The president of the Kurai Women’s Association has delivered a powerful speech to the crowd gathered at the opening of a bazaar in South Nasioi Constituency during the festive period.

Mrs Lucy Blaise, president of the association which initiated the bazaar, said that local people need support from their local leaders for development.

“Womens here in Kurai,” Mrs Blaise said, “though we do not get support from leaders, we have come together to host this event with the belief that we can do something to help ourselves and our families.”


“Though most mothers depending heavily on earning money through marketing of our garden produce, transport for this produce is very poor.

“Therefore we call upon leaders present here today to follow up on our request for a vehicle to assist mothers deliver their produce to market in Arawa town.”

The two-day bazaar was arranged to support the activities of local women through the festive period.

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Former BCL Company Secretary passes away

paulThe Board of Directors of Bougainville Copper Limited (BCL) are deeply saddened by the passing of former Company Secretary and our great friend, Paul Coleman.

Paul was with the company for 19 years and was integral to the restoration of dialogue between the Autonomous Bougainville Government and BCL.

He was committed to a range of community and philanthropic activities in Papua New Guinea and in 2014 he was made an Officer in the Order of the British Empire (OBE) for his service to commerce, the mining sector and

Our deepest condolences are with Paul’s wife Kym and family.

In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre. The donation page can be found at:

A funeral for Paul will be held at the Cathedral of St Stephen, 249 Elizabeth Street, Brisbane on Friday 11 September at 11am.

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Bougainville and Solomons students unite for cultural performance

By Gideon Davika


This year the Bougainville students and the Solomon Island students at Divine Word University (DWU) have come together to put up performances at special occasions that school has hosted during the first semester.

The first performance which the Bougainville and Solomon Island students performed was on 15 March 2015 at the Divine Word University graduation ceremony.

They performed a War dance from the Solomon Islands to lead the school executives into the graduation hall.

The Bougainville students were called by Solomon Island students since the dance is similar to the Bougainville’s dance called the ‘Sing Sing Kaur’ which is danced by blowing pen pipes made from bamboo.

After that they put up another performance at the church to lead the Procession of Offer on Sunday with a similar dance.

The Bougainville Student Association (BSA) President, Greg Avira, said that the Solomon Islands students have been invited to put up one performance during the 10th Blackville Night.

He said that the Solomon Islands students have agreed to the invitation and they are practicing their item before the Blackville Night.

The Solomon Islands Students Association President mentioned that this is the year that they have joined Bougainville students to perform in the school campus on events host by the University.

He said that in past years they only come together to lead the choir on the Sundays assigned.

The students, whose homelands share a border, have now stated that they will keep the relationship and unite together in special occasions that will be hosted by the university.

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Police force grows with Australian partnership

By Veronica Hannette


In December 2014 the Bougainville Police Service opened its new barracks during the visit of Australian Foreign Affairs Minister, Julie Bishop, to Bougainville.

The event took place at Hutjena were the new barracks was jointly inaugurated by the ABG Police and Correctional Service Minister, Patrick Nisira, and Australian Foreign Affairs Minister, Julie Bishop.

Minister Nisira expressed his gratitude and stated that the opening of the new barracks and training centre is an important chapter in the history of the Bougainville Police Service.

“This gives us this opportunity of embracing this spirit of partnership with Australia to be successful, especially with the co-funded infrastructure,” Mr Nisira said.

“This has also seen police houses and barracks constructed in Kokopau, Arawa and Buin district, an important milestone in our pursuit of peace, security and justice for the people of Bougainville.”

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Dark horse presidential candidate wants weapons disposal review

By Leonard Fong Roka

Justin Pokata (left) with outgoing DWU Bougainville Students Association President, Jonathan Mameri.

On the 10-13 of October Bougainville students at Divine Word University had a visit from Justin Pokata Kira, a man with his own dreams for Bougainville Island and its people.

Based in Port Moresby, he owns properties in Buka and Arawa, but has aimed to move himself and his business back home to Bougainville and help contribute to the development of the region.

A humble man who does not have a big reputation in Bougainville, Justin Pokata Kira is in the process of writing a Bougainville Crisis memoir and also has his eyes on the Presidential Seat at the 2015 Bougainville election.

One of his many reasons for entering Bougainvillean politics is to change the current weapons disposal process to better suit the ex-combatants.

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Prof Jerry Semos – visionary academic leader – dies in Madang

By Keith Jackson

Papua New Guinea lost one of its most eminent academics today with the death of Associate Professor Jerome (Jerry) Semos, Dean of the Faculty of Arts at Divine Word University in Madang.

Prof Semos, from Bougainville, passed away in the early morning hours after an oustanding academic career.

He was awarded a doctorate from James Cook University in Queensland for a thesis on Natural Resources, Nasioi Society and the Colonial and Post-Colonial State in Papua New Guinea: The Mining and the Undermining of Resource Sovereignty and Resource Development in the Bougainville Copper Project 1963 to 1990.

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