By Gary Hatigeva
THE Melanesian Spearhead Group (MSG) has lost its purpose of existence to fight for the rights of Melanesians, says Gary Juffa, the Governor of Oro Province in Papua New Guinea.
The PNG Governor who is in the country for an Environment summit, made this strong statement at an interview yesterday, when questioned on his take regarding the MSG, which many thought had principally been sold out.
Mr Juffa from time to time, in various occasion advocates on the West Papuan issue, a course he has been championing in both his home country and around the region.
Meanwhile, during yesterday’s interview, the outspoken politician who is also known for his strong stand on rights of indigenous people of lands, reflected on the initial establishment of the MSG, which he thought was right in its approach from the start until it got compromised.
“See, the whole intent of that organisation was to fight for the rights of Melanesians, for a greater Melanesia, for a free Melanesia, but unfortunately, they have completely abandoned all that, and they are now looking more and more at trade.
“When you hear trade and trade agreements, you know, these are issues pushed by the wealthy, and usually, it will come at the expense of the poor, and so it is not a game we oath to be thinking about playing, unless we do it in a degree whereby we benefit and there’s inter-trade between the islands.
“But MSG was not set up for that purpose, and that may be part of its agenda, down the line, but its original agenda was the well-being and freedom for Melanesians and a greater Melanesia, and they have completely lost the plot.
“It has to disband itself as it has been infiltrated and compromised, and it is no longer useful vehicle for anything,” Governor Juffa stressed.
He then pointed out that the Pacific can’t be free until West Papua is free, and added that the people of the pacific have to realise that West Papuans are pacific islanders, “they are Melanesians who deserve to have their own freedom and determine their destiny, and they don’t have that now”.
The PNG Governor came in on Monday to hold talks at this summit on environment, regarding his experiences within his provincial jurisdiction, on how he dealt with logging as a leader and what measures he’s taken to help his people.