Smoke Signals

Tuesday May 15, 2018 Published in Smoke Signals
Prime Minister Henry Puna. Prime Minister Henry Puna.

Where in the world is our prime minister this time?

There used to be a game called, “Where in the world is Henry Puna?” Well, there wasn’t really, but there was something similar, called “Where’s Wally?” or something like that. You had to work out where that particular person was in the world at that time. Well, this week Puna is in Japan. A couple of weeks ago he was in Manihiki. Sorry, no business class airpoints on that flight, but still taxpayer-funded. Before that, probably Abu Dhabi, which appears to be a favourite destination for the well-travelled PM. According to the papers, the PM has spent some 100 days each year for the last how many years, travelling outside the country of which he is supposed to be the leader. That is some 30 per cent of the year spent travelling around the globe, picking up a huge number of airpoints, which he should not even qualify for. The excuse is he is building friendships, arranging mutual cooperation deals, etc. In short, just patipati on a global scale. He as well as many others talk loud and long about Cook Islands independence, but it seems to this reader that precisely the opposite is happening, and that this country is becoming increasingly dependent on foreign finance, aid, assistance and mutual cooperation. Call it what you will, but light years away from being independent!  Yes, this government sat in parliament this year for about 10 half days. That is about two per cent of the total year. Add the finance minister as well as the health minister to the total time spent travelling outside the country, and you can see a very bad picture as far as leadership and actual government is concerned. So think before you vote to give these guys another term. I reckon things can only get worse with them in charge again.


A few years ago CINews devoted most of the front page to a papa’a road worker with over 40 years’ experience who recommended that the best way to repair pot holes was to make the holes square or rectangle and compact the fill. It must work as even after all the rain there were no empty square pot holes, just round ones. Or did we write him off as another papa’a who thinks he knows better? 


I think it’s a good thing if the Chinese comes to the Cook Islands. They could possibly show us all how to become millionaires.


In Big Norm’s defence, though he is not perfect I remember him getting things done while in power without the bills running into the tens of millions.

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