A lot of talk about what we didn’t achieve. I look at it differently.
What did we achieve?
We educated a large number of Papua New Guineans in all four regions.
People are now better informed of concerns about the economy and the importance of the PM’s office. People who would have otherwise remained ignorant of the effects of economic downturn and the abuses now know about it. The boycott was not a loss.
We exposed the kind of people run the government
We were arrested. We were stopped from carrying out awareness meetings and we were shot at. What kind of people would be willing to trample on our democratic rights?
We showed that the current politicians do not respect the generation of the future.
We listened to the rhetoric that we were influenced by outside sources. An insult to our intelligence. We proved that the politicians are self-serving and care nothing about the concerns of the people.
We showed that Papua New Guinea can be united by a cause
We demonstrated our unity as Papua New Guineans. We showed our parents that we are not only Highlanders, Papuans, Momase or NGI but we are one nation.
We proved that we could respect our women.
We treated our female students with respect. They stood in front with the boys and they spoke out about issues. We proved that leadership can happen with the women in front and as equals. We put – a parliament that has only 3 women – to shame!
We made one HUGE gain – We achieved all this without violence
We didn’t fight back with stones and bottles when we were confronted with guns. We used our creativity and our minds to fight back. We used existing systems and fought back at those who tried to suppress us.
DON’T TELL ME IT WAS ALL FOR NOTHING! WE GAINED! AND WE GAINED MUCH!