Minister for National Planning Sam Basil commits to successfully delivering the 2020 National Census. Mr Basil said he has directed the National Statistical Office (NSO), the drivers of the 2020 National Census to prepare a National Executive Council (NEC) submission to update ministers on the preparations and scheduled work plan to deliver the census.
The Government has allocated K100 million towards the 2020 National Census, a cut of K50 million of the originally budgeted amount for this year, says acting National Statistical chief officer John Igitoi. He said this was done due to financial constraints that the country was facing now so they had to cut out some activities at the preparatory stage.
Before the actual National Population and Housing Census is conducted in July this year, preliminary activities such as a pilot census project was set to begin on January 20 to 27 in eight provinces.
Human Rights Watch’s annual summary confirms that the government has done little in the past to tackle corruption, police brutality and domestic violence. Deputy director for Asia Phil Robertson said despite a change of prime minister in PNG last year, progress on human rights had still been too slow. Justice Minister and Attorney-General Davis Steven said he was concerned the non-governmental organisation had ignored various efforts on human rights by the new government which was working to usher in reforms.
Davis said concerns about corruption played a part in the change of government and the new administration was continuing to work with the United Nations and the European Union on areas concerning human rights.
National Fraud and Anti-Corruption Directorate (NFACD) head Matthew Damaru said funding had been a big impediment to their investigations, especially in the fight against corruption. He said the new command in the department was moving in a positive direction to address the issues.
Mathew Damaru is also concerned that people in authority are abusing their office to suppress investigations or pervert the course of justice: “We (NFACD) will not hesitate to arrest and charge people who abuse their office to create incentive for corruption to flourish at workplaces by holding them accountable.”