Prime Minister done well to try to clean up Housing


I wish to congratulate the prime minister for his wisdom to announce in Parliament an Investigation Committee to look into the operations of the National Housing Corporation.
It has been long overdue for this milking cow to be operated thoroughly to see if it has enough supply to continue the trend or redirect what is left for further investments.
Again, congratulations to the prime minister for this timely call for investigations for a state entity that had been vandalised by self-centered culprits.
As a longtime resident of Tokarara and someone well-versed with operations of the troubled National Housing Corporation, I am being prompted to comment and offer a number of alternatives to some of the existing problems.
The NHC had been in the limelight again and again for all the wrong doings of which the trend will continue until the prime minister comes on board to replace the current minister, as well as the managing director or CEO. In all organisations that fault, start cleaning from the top policy.
From a layman’s view, this has been the worst combination of a political head and an administration head, lacking the knowledge and management skills of a leading money-making corporate entity, and in particular NHC in PNG.
There have been far too many, crisis after crisis, under the current leadership as the minister has never been seen a Tokarara head office of the NHC to attend to matters of importance from the board of the management.
At no time had the minister had the courtesy of calling on the office of the managing director to brief him on the major issues affecting the NHC because of the close inter-relationship between the minister and the CEO who are  cousins. It may sound strange but this is real scenario at the NHC and I find it very difficult as to why many long-serving employees of the NHC have been so quiet, not raising concerns about the constant mismanagement of affairs.
Surprisingly, one would assume that a number of senior management personnel are collaborating with the office to run down the affairs, especially funds with employees not being paid on time at paydays occurring many times over the years.
This is unacceptable, especially considering the fact that the NHC is supposed to be collecting millions in rentals throughout PNG every month.
If the CEO of a state entity is not in control as expected, then the onus is on the general manager to step up to correct the mistakes but this practice have never been at the NHC, although the demand to have this eventuate was always there on many occasions.
Having to go through all this mismanagement fortunes at NHC Tokarara for some time, I am recommending the following for the prime minister to take note of:

  • In the absence of the board for NHC, the minister has no authority to submit names of candidates for the managing director’s position;
  • the list of candidates that the minister has in his passion are the people who have been collaborating with the outgoing MD to run down and mismanage the NHC;
  • some of them have been with the NHC for too long and they are stagnant with no signs of improvement in their work outputs;
  • those minister candidates lack the academic qualifications or a university degree and a minimum of 10 years of continuous employment with NHC; and,
  • In the absence of an appointed board of directors for NHC, the onus of appointing a acting managing director is in the hands of the Personnel Management Department.

Having listed this recommendations,  I am optimistic as to why the minister has omitted two names of highly-qualified and long-serving personnel of 15 years or more with the NHC and the required credentials for the job.
I wish to call on the prime minister to complete the assignment he started by appointing a highly-qualified and competent person to revamp this multi-million kina entity.

Sine Yaltom, Tokarara

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