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De La Salle Students voice Concern on Corruption

- Nigel Akuani

NBC, Port Moresby: Five students from De La Salle Secondary School went live on radio to speak about corruption, during the Chat Room program’s fifth session broadcasted on NBC’s Tribe FM on Wednesday 10th April.

The panel of students had four from Year Twelves and one from Year Ten who are representatives of the Youth Against Corruption Association (YACA) in De La Salle. 

The students discussed on the various aspects of corruption, its impact on the development of the country, and made recommendations on how the issue could be minimised.

President of Youth Against Corruption Association (YACA) De La Salle and year 12 student, Joel Rimbu said corruption had three categories but the negative impact of each in the end were all the same. 

“There is petty, grand and systematic corruption. However, they are all done by individuals or groups with the aim of gaining personal wealth, power or other favours, at the expense of the majority of people,” Joel said. 

 

Joshua Yau, a Year 12 student stated that corruption occurred due to various reasons but all stemmed from a strong weakness in moral values and conduct of people. “Selfishness and lack of morals in conducting their duty is the main cause of corruption, where people violate all the societal beliefs relating to what is right and what is wrong. Even if it means advancing their self-interest at the expense of others.”

Taylor Ginoda, also in Year 12 said corruption affects many aspects of development and the country’s growth as a whole. “Corruption is hindering and slowing the growth of the country from the economy, infrastructure, education, health, sports, etc. The lower income earners are the most affected by corruption as PNG’s population largely falls under this category.”

Year 10 student and Vice-President of YACA De La Salle, Azriel Gamiandu, spoke on the role of youths and how they can be effective toward addressing corruption. “Corruption occurs because of ignorance when we choose not to take action. But the voice is a powerful tool especially among youths. If you know corruption is rising, make a stand, and take action either through awareness activities or other necessary means.”

Brother Shashi Abrar Teacher in Charge of the Media Group said he was impressed by the responses given by his students in the discussion and could not be happier.

Dagea Aka, Youth Integrity Program Coordinator of Transparency International PNG, also a former member of YACA at Jubilee Secondary and one of the panellists said corruption was very real in the country and was amazed by the courage displayed by the young students in coming forward to discuss such a big issue.

There were two callers that rang during the show to voice their questions. The first caller, Jason wanted to know how the students work against corruption would change the situation in future. The second caller asked the students if they considered the practice of receiving money during exam marking to be a form of corruption.

The sixth session will be hosted on Wednesday 17thApril at 2:30pm with Journalism students from the University of Papua New Guinea.