TO clarify, Unesco does not have an office in Papua New Guinea.
Its regional office is in Apia-Samoa which manages the affairs of the 16-member states, including PNG.
Any member state around the world has what is called national commission for Unesco (Natcom).
The national commission for Unesco is established in a country by the government of the host country.
As a constituent element of Unesco and a unique network within the United Nations system, national commissions are a very special resource for the organisation.
They contribute significantly to the pursuit of its objectives and the conceptualisation and delivery of its programmes.
National commissions are crucial to forging partnerships with civil society, local authorities, the academic community, the private sector and other core stakeholders.
They are vitally important to enhancing the visibility of the organisation and protecting its image.
They are also actively helping to strengthen Unesco’s action in the field, as well as in UN-common country programming exercises.
For PNG, this has been lagging since assuming its autonomous status in 2008.
Countries like Australia and New Zealand have national commission as a programme unit under their departments of foreign affairs.
I can’t understand why PNG Government wants it as an autonomous status when it, in its wisdom, amalgamated it with the Education Department.
Let it be in its current form and remove the 30-plus officers on the Alesco payroll. This is a total wastage of taxpayer money which can be saved and used for purposeful development for the people of this country.