Environment and development
in coastal regions and in small islands

Field Project Summary
Sound development in the Motu Koita urban villages, Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea

Revision Date:

1st November, 2000.

Title:  Sound development in the Motu Koita urban villages, Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea
Goal: To address, through generating awareness and self-realisation, the social, economic and environmental problems affecting the livelihood of the Motu Koita people.
Location: Motu Koita villages in Port Moresby, the National Capital of Papua New Guinea.
Starting date: 1998.
Partners: Motu Koita Council; University of Papua New Guinea; Papua New Guinea National Commission for UNESCO; UNESCO: Social and Human Sciences Sector, Culture Sector, Coastal Regions and Small Islands platform.
Pilot project leader: Mr. Haraka Gaudi, Institute of Public Administration (PNGIPA), PO Box 1216 Boroko, Papua New Guinea. 
Tel: 675 3260433, 3267345, 3267163, Fax: 675 3261654. 
e-mail  gaudichn@upng.ac.pg

The Motu Koita, numbering around 30,000 of the city’s 250,000 total population, are the traditional landowners of the greater Port Moresby area.  The city’s current population is a cross section of people from all the provinces of the country and the world over.  Problems faced by the local people are related to rapid urbanisation and limited space.  Major development projects contribute to exacerbate these problems.                                                                               

The project seeks to assist the Motu Koita address their immediate environment and conservation problems. It seeks to link the urban village population with municipal authorities, government agencies, as well as aid donors in a multidisciplinary approach and team effort to promote wise practices.                                                    

The main activities under the project can be listed as follows:

Phase 1 (completed 1998): An awareness campaign in Baruni, Tatana and Hanuabada villages, together with site surveys, data collection and meetings with villagers, were conducted. A final report covering Phase 1 has been submitted to UNESCO-CSI Paris.
Phase 2: The activities have included:
Awareness seminars conducted in Baruni and Hanuabada villages.  Baruni seminars targeted church based youth groups, while the Hanuabada session formed part of the United Church Urban Region Youth Convention, attended by 600 youths from urban areas like Port Moresby, Madang, Morobe, Eastern Highlands, Oro, Manus, Wewak and Vanimo.  The findings of the Phase 1 Final Report were disseminated to the participants.
The successful and historical Inaugural Motu Koita Summit on Motu Koita Development was held in Baruni Village on 31 August – 1 September 1999.  The theme of the summit was Identity and Survival of Motu Koita People in Year 2000 and Beyond (Motu Koita Identity into the Year 2000).
A Working Group adopted by the Summit, the Motu Koita Task Force, was established under the leadership of Mr. Gaudi.  A general meeting was organized on 20th December 1999 at Parliament House by Lady Carol Kidu, Member of Parliament for Moresby South.  Since then, activities and work plans have been put on hold due to logistical and funding problems.
Lady Kidu was appointed as Chairperson of the National Commission for Urbanisation and Social Development.  She has just submitted her final report to the government to be tabled in Parliament soon.  We are hopeful that the plight of Motu Koita people will finally be addressed on the floor of Parliament.  Kabua Kabua and Mr. Gaudi presented a set of Motu Koita position papers in a public hearing of this parliamentary committee in early March 2000.
Achievements & Assessment: (1) The Motu Koita are slowly becoming aware of the complex social, economic and environmental problems affecting their livelihood.
(2) The leaders, Motu Koita councilors, task force members and invited community leaders believe that the only way forward for their people to meaningfully participate in sustainable development, is to work within the established structures and systems.
(3) Lack of cooperation among community leaders and Motu-Koita councilors, petty jealousies, bickering and self-interest appear to hinder the progress of the project.
Introduction Activities Publications Search
Wise Practices Regions Themes