Post-Courier June 7, 2017
Category Archives: Housing
The Prime Minister Hon. Peter O’Neill CMG MP, has committed to continue partnering with communities and districts who take the lead in providing better homes to improve lives of people and create stronger communities.
PM O’Neill said this after committing K250,000 towards a community based project to build homes for families in the Waria Valley area of the Huon-Gulf District in Morobe province.
The Morobe Rural Housing Project project is being coordinated by former Huon Gulf MP, Sasa Zibe, to help families in the district build better homes and improve the people’s lives.
Prime Minister O’Neill was invited by the community to officially launch the project at the handover of the project’s operational plan manuals to fourteen Local Level Government Wards in the District on March 18.
“Housing is a basic need for our people, and I commend your community and your Leader and former MP for Huon-Gulf Sasa Zibe, for taking a lead role,” the Prime Minister said.
“I have know him since 2006 when he was an MP and Minister, as one of the best and strongest leaders of our country.
“When we have better homes for our people we will have better and healthy communities.
“That also applies to free and better healthcare, to which our Government is fully committed to providing.
“Our Government is fully committed to projects that make life better in rural areas and this will continue.”
Prime Minister O’Neill told hundreds of people, who had gathered for the first time to witness a sitting Prime Minister visit their district, that the Government is committed to rural and community based projects.
“We are directly funding 10 million Kina to every district in the nation through the District Services Improvement Program, and this is helping to improve people’s lives.
“We are building infrastructure in our country because we want our people in rural areas and provinces to get benefits and services like concrete roads.
“We want to build concrete roads not only in the cites like Lae, but all around the country in rural areas, where they will last a lifetime.”
The Prime Minister warned that in the coming months, people around the nation had a serious choice before them, to continue the growth and reform of the past five years, or to go backwards.
“It is unlikely that a different Government will continue free education and healthcare, or housing programs and infrastructure programs.
“We have changed Papua New Guinea by putting our people first and if our Government returns after the election we will continue with our core policies.
“Our opponents might complain that free education is expensive, and it is costly, but it is worth it.
“Our Government has secured funding of around 700 Million Kina a year for the Tuition Fee Free Education policy and this funding must continue to increase in the next Parliament.”
Prime Minister’s Office PNG March 20, 2017 1.53 pm
PNG Daily News February 21, 2017
Nursing accommodation soon to be completed will provide housing for Paradise Private Hospital staff to ensure they are looked after well and they concentrate on important work of saving lives.
Paradise Privet Hospital has recognize their nurses as the most important assets of the company.
Therefore providing lodging for their nurses is vital so they can be on-call for duties. This will also increase their performance on saving lives and providing the best health care to the people of Papua New Guinea.
Pic: Paradise Hospital Facebook page
THE PNG Trade Union Congress has now joined in expressing serious concerns on the new housing tax which will come into effect next fortnight.
The new taxation measures was supposed to be effected as of January 1, but most companies got the notification from the Internal Revenue Commission on January 20 and will take effect next pay day, which is next week.
Hundreds of working class Papua New Guineans living in company-provided housing could lose up to two-thirds of their fortnightly salary.
This is because the rent value of the employer-supplied accommodation will be included with the actual salary component.
So, if a worker earns K600 a fortnight and lives in accommodation valued at K700 a week in any of the country’s larger cities like Port Moresby, Lae or Goroka, for example, the worker will be taxed on the sum K2000 (total benefits of K600+K1400) – even though he or she does not actually receive the extra K700 in cash every week.
PNGTUC general secretary John Paska said it was unfair. He said the Government had failed to provide housing for workers and is now passing the cost to private sector provided housing.
He said a review of this tax was a must that must be addressed in the Supplementary Budget that would come up during the current Parliament session.
“We agree to concerns that have been raised across the board, on the housing tax. The issue is not so much per se but rather the disproportionate quantum between the percentages of tax imposed against income earned as well as the sudden imposition of the tax.”
“There are two sides to the ledge. There’s the income earned column and the income spent. Wages earned by most workers is already heavily taxed at various level such that, there is no such thing as” take home pay. Those with some semblance of take home pay can barely stretch it over five days.
“It means over the next five days to fortnight they are living on borrowed money from loan sharks who charge compound interest on money lent. It’s a vicious cycle already as it is.”
He said take home pay is a critical component of wages in any country because it is a key indicator of wages share of national income as well as purchasing power parity.
He said a drop in take home a magnitude of which the current housing tax imposes has serious implications for the livelihood of workers and their families.
“It also cuts deeply into the savings ability of workers. The housing tax is not well thought out or calculated” He said all revenue measures place a burden on workers’ pay which trigger off a ripple effect that force on claims for wage rise, industrial action of wage claims are not settled, disruption to services and a hike in prices of goods and services.
“The cruel irony to all of this is that, the state and much of the private sector have absolved themselves from providing homes to employees and they want to tax workers living in homes.”
“Workers in PNG just constitute just 10 per cent of the population, they however contribute the greatest share of revenue earned internally through tax through tax to the state. Workers have often been unfairly shunned by politician as the “lucky ones “who are employed and earn fortnight wages. These 10 per cent however, effectively keep the nation afloat. They deserve some breathing space
This tax suffocates them and their children.”
“There are other revenue measures that should be explored and taxed. The IRC has adopted a draconian approach that penalises workers and their families.
“The tax should be imposed gradually rather than give a shock treatment in the manner they have done. We appreciate that the government has undertaken to review provisions of the budget dealing with tax such as this and call on the government to ensure that this is done.”
“It’s a dream for workers to have a home of their own. The tax mercilessly and callously destroys this dream and aspiration.”