Union: Swamp Ghost better off in America
The National [ May 31, 2006 ]
PNG should allow the Swamp Ghost to be shipped to the US because it does not have the financial capacity to maintain the war relic, the PNG Trade Union Congress said yesterday.
The country has an appalling record of maintaining war relics and historical sites, general secretary John Paska said in a statement.
“We have assessed the tourism, legal and sovereignty issues surrounding the Swamp Ghost and consider that much of the reaction had been swayed by sentimental and political considerations rather than practical realities,” he said. He said the aircraft had little economic and tourism value in efforts to attract more tourists to the country. “Keeping the aircraft in America will add more value to the tourist industry here than if the Swamp Ghost remained in PNG.”
Mr Paska said the plane had been lying in the swamp since World War II and “we have never had the political will or the capacity to uplift it for repair and installation as a war relic for public display”.
“Hundreds, if not thousands, of war relics have been allowed to corrode and lose their value throughout the country. “The gun stations on top of Paga Hill have no apparent value. The Old House of Assembly was contemptuously allowed to crumble and rot away.
“The museum itself does not receive the necessary budgetary support and is badly in need of renovation and a facelift,” he said, and warned that if the situation continued, many artifacts in the museum would deteriorate beyond recognition. “Our record with respect to the upkeep and maintenance of war relics, artifacts, museum specimens, heritage buildings and monuments is atrocious to the point of disbelief. “With such a shameful record, how can we muster the audacity to cry foul about the shipment of the Swamp Ghost to America when our record shows that we simply cannot and will not look after it?”
The National Poll
Should Papua New Guinean authorities allow the Boeing B-17 Flying Fortress bomber,Swamp Ghost be shipped to the United States and placed in a museum there? Yes, No, Not Sure
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