BY ISAAC NICHOLAS
THE best is yet to come, so stay safe to witness these during the next two years. That is Prime Minister Peter O’Neill’s New Year message as Papua New Guinea prepares to usher in 2017.
“Please stay safe, look after your families and your communities, and let’s work together so that we can build a stronger Papua New Guinea in 2017.
“As a nation we have so much to be proud of as we enter into 2017.”
“In the coming year we will go to National Election, regardless of politics, we will go to election as one country, a very vibrant democracy and a people who care about our nation.
“In 2018, our country will become the host of APEC – Asia-Pacific Economic Co-operation – Leaders’ Summit.” He said the world’s attention would be on PNG with Prime Ministers and Presidents of APEC countries coming. Mr O’Neill said this would be a proud time and it would continue to change how the world sees PNG.
“Around the world, Papua New Guineans are representing us in business and Government. Today we have pilots flying the biggest jets in the world, our scientists are leading ground breaking research and our engineers are working on massive projects in many parts of the world.”
“We have so much to be proud of, with the change we are seeing, but we also have a lot of work ahead of us.” He said every man, woman and child must benefit from this change as PNG developed.
“You have our commitment that as your Government will work to make sure all Papua New Guineans continue to benefit from this change.” He said PNG had survived some most difficult challenges both domestic and global including the downturn in global commodity prices and drought.
“When we faced economic pressures, we cut our spending and managed our economy.
“As well as overcoming these challenges over the past year, we have also achieved a lot as a nation.” Mr O’Neill said more children than ever before are in school, more people receiving healthcare, and communities safer with more police and strengthening court systems.
“We are continuing to build more roads, more bridges, more airports, more ports, more wharves and other infrastructure that were neglected for many years.
“Life is better now in our country than just five years ago, and we will keep building our economy and develop our nation.”
“We are also in the most stable political time in our nation’s history. This stability has led to increased respect around the world.”
“Have a Happy New Year Papua New Guinea.”