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  • Fr. Leonardus B.C Kartika, SMM

New Teachers College for Western Province

Kiunga, Western Province - Ground breaking of St. Montfort Teacher Collage Kiunga done nicely with full of spirit of joy and hope in Kiunga, North Fly District of Western Province on 22 October 2020.

This ceremony was attended by more than a thousand people mostly students. They were standing side by side of the road from the Kiunga airport to the ground breaking area. Other groups presented cultural dancing. People faithfully standing under the hot sun listened to the speakers to the end of the ceremony at about 4.30 pm.

There were government leaders and ministers came from Port Moresby, Churches leaders and development partner leaders such Ok Tedi Mining LTD, SDP and MRDC were present in this important event for Western Province as well.

Provincial district administrator of Western Province Mr. Robert Alphonse Kaiyun helped the attenders to have an overview of this project. He mentioned that this important project was one of the keys development projects that would add value the building of human capital for the current and future generation. He also said that this project was based on the Western Province development forum agreement 2018 which one of them was the development of higher education in Western Province.

The North Fly MP Hon. James Donald in his speech said his thankfulness to the Catholic Diocese of Daru-Kiunga for caring the work of the province at the past years, giving their land for building of the teacher collage and agency the school.

Hon. James Donald stressed more on the important of the teacher collage for the people of Western Province. He said that stablishing of the teacher collage would be the answer of the demand of the teachers in Western Province. He said also that it would cut a lot unnecessary of cost for study in teacher collage in other provinces.

The governor of Western Province Hon. Taboi Awi Yoto declare his financial support for the teacher collage. He also encouraged the other project partners to do so because this support would be for the next generation of Western Province. He also was assurance the equality of money for another district.

Bishop of Catholic Diocese of Daru-Kiunga Bishop Gilles Côté, s.m.m mentioned in his speech that that project was really memorable moment because we took care of the future of children and the quality of the teacher. This project was about today but also about better future of everybody.

Bishop said that one thing pleased him was with the contraction of St. Montfort teacher College would make good news for of the northern part of mission list to be used for the development of education for the benefit of the people in Western Province.

Bishop Gilles Côté, s.m.m also said his thankfulness to some persons whom worked tirelessly for this project. He said thanked firstly to the North Fly MP Mr. James Donald for since very beginning was supporting this project by his words, initiative, leadership and funding to make them able to did something. Bishop stressed also that without Mr. James Donald, Governor and government of Western province this project would not be possible.

He tanked to the Diocesan Education Secretary Mr. Kevin Joseph for his leadership and hard work of preparing many thing and meeting with many people from so many different departments at provincial level and national level regarding this project.

He also stressed that hardworking of Mr. Kevin would be benefited for the children and the future of Western Province. Bishop Gilles said that Mr. Kevin and his team had led along the way to work for this project. Firstly, approval from Diocesan Education Board. Secondly approval by District Development Authority. Thirdly approval by Provincial Education board, followed the approval by Provincial Executive Council. After that, Mr. Kevin and his team went to so many departments in National level with support from MPs, Governor, Government and many people of Western Province.

Bishop Gilles also expressed his gratitude for the full support of this project to the Provincial Administrator, the Provincial Government the Department of Education and others.

He also expressed his gratefulness to Fr. Masjon Kennedy SMM and his team in Diocesan Financial Administrator to accept responsibility for all financial matter of this project. Bishop told the people that each Kina spent on this project would be properly recorded and reported.

He also acknowledged the present of the managers of big trust fund of the companies also present here. They present was clear sign of the backup of this project.

The Minister of Education Hon. Joseph Yopyyopy stressed in his speech about the important of education for everybody. He said that the school’s leaver still had opportunity to have higher education by distance study. he also said that for those who finished their distance study until grade 12, they could enter the higher education such teacher collage.

The Minister for Department of Higher Education, Research, Science and Technology Hon. Nick Kuman mentioned that Saint Montfort Teacher College Kiunga would be the only teacher government teacher collage in Western Province. However, if in any body wanted to run their private teacher collage, the door always opened. He encouraged that to get the licence to run the teacher college all the inquiry had to be fulfill.

He also stressed that teacher training program was very important to provide good quality of education to our young people. He said science and math was drop dramatically that in last thirteen years. Because of that this country had no enough doctor graduated from the university. We needed to produce a lot of doctors, HCO, and nurses for the rural hospital in this country. It could be started if we had good teacher training program. because of that we wanted to see a content oriented for teacher training program. this would be the challenge for the new teacher collage here.

During the ceremony Mr. James Donald presented two million Kina cheque to Bishop Gilles Côté, s.m.m for the continuing of the building of the teacher collage.

The program ended with the ground breaking done by Hon. Nick Kuman as the sign starting of the project.

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