CEO diplomatic but deputy brash

Letters, Normal

The National, Tuesday 07th Febuary 2012

THE recent turn of events at Waigani has definitely raised many eyebrows.
We have seen time and again the current PNG chief executive officer and his deputy taking opposite approaches when dealing with important issues.
On one hand, we have Belden Namah who does not give a second thought about what he is saying or doing  so long as in his (Namah) opi­nion, what he is saying or doing is right.
On the other hand we have Peter O’Neill who always handles things diplomatically, even to a point where he plays down Namah’s outbursts and actions in a cool way.
One main reason may be because of their professional backgrounds (but I may be wrong).
To some people, the odd couple may seem amusing.
But to other learned citizens, the antics of the former are not only frustrating but can be overwhelming at times.
The fact of the matter is that the making and the make-up of the go­vernment, as we all know, consists of two major parties and other smaller parties.
The leaders of these two parties with other former notable opposition members, according to many observers, were instrumental in the change of government in August last year.
The chief executive officer knows very well that he is the leader of a minority party – in terms of numbers (as compared to the other two party leaders).
He knows very well that for him to stay in power will very much rely on those two leaders – Namah and Don Polye.
The CEO could have suspended his deputy but maybe due to the above scenario, he is unwillingly or unable to.
It is a sad situation where Namah can do or say whatever he likes but will never be sacked.
There are also situations where some O’Neill-Namah government members go around making speeches and promises in a loose manner.
O’Neill will never summon any of his ministers or members because he will not want to lose this great opportunity to take this government into the general election in four months time.
Finally, I personally think the current political marriage will not survive after June election.
This is because O’Neill and Namah have shown that they are not on the same frequency.

Jack Waru
Port Moresby