A Village Planning Committee (VPC) Chairman says being an active leader is a driving factor to delivering projects at the community level.
Mr. Francis Kumin of Moian village said this during the first Middle Fly VPC Meeting for this year in Aiambak, Western Province.
He is one of the longest serving VPC chairman in the Middle Fly region, crediting his community for their support and confidence in him serving them for the past 15 years. “It’s all about earning the trust of your community” he said.
They voted for you, you have to find means and ways or sacrifice personal time and assets to deliver.
I make many sacrifices, and I make long distance travels by dinghy to Kiunga to make sure I deliver what my community has asked of me. I do this because of the love for this job as the VPC chairman, and for my people.”
Mr Kumin said he was first elected chairman in 2004 and his proven work had him re-elected in 2009, and again in 2015.
As chairman, he has so far delivered a church building project, a tractor for agricultural purposes, school projects, hospital upgrade project and eaglewood seedlings under the Livelihood Program.
“The church is the biggest project I had accomplished through the Village Development Funding (VDF) and Trust support.”
He said consistency in leadership also played a vital role in delivering projects.
Mr Kumin said funding availability and its allocation towards sustainable projects, especially in agriculture and livelihood, should be the main concern at the leadership level during VPC meetings.
“I brought projects using the VDF and the trust funds, but recently these funds are in the red,” he said. He is urging the current trustees and the MF Trust to find alternate funding sources or technical assistance from outside sources other than OTML.
“My community can only do what they can to support the projects with labour and provision of meals, but it all depends on the Trustees and the MF Trust to source other means of support from development partners” he said. The VPC Chairmen’s meeting is an Ok Tedi Development Foundation (OTDF) sanctioned function under Program Services Department.