Alumni group: A strong national identity needed

National, Normal

The Nationl, Monday 3rd September, 2012

IT is vital to reassess and realign Papua New Guinea’s sense of national identity, a PNG Australia Alumni Association official says.
“Reaching a national identity is about changing our mindsets to accept and respect one another no matter who we are, our stature, religion, where we are from,” association acting president Girigi Daroa said last Thursday.
She told the gathering at the two-day PNGAAA conference at a hotel in Port Moresby that although they all came from all over Papua New Guinea, they all had one main thing in common – “Aussie influence”.
“Whether we have gone Down Under to attain our high school certificate, a diploma, a bachelor’s degree, a masters or PhD, we have come back to our shores with a different perspective of life.”
She urged the association to influence the mindsets of fellow Papua New Guineans to accept and respect one another.
“This will pave the way for us to reach a national identity.
“We must build a nation in which tribal language and cultural boundaries are transcended, not for exploitation of one group by another but for mutual support for each other,” she said.
Incorporated in 2006, PNGAAA is made up of PNG graduates from Australian educational institutions.