Geo Message (September 2011)

Recent Events

The 51st Fiji Institute of Surveyors Congress

The 51st Fiji Institute of Surveyors Congress was held on the weekend of the 12th to the 14th of August 2011 at the Fun World Resort.  The theme of the Congress was “Technology and Sustainability”


45 delegates attended over the 2 days and were treated to presentations from a variety of presenters.

The conference was opened by the President of FIS Mr. Paserio Samisoni. The Keynote address was presented by the Acting Permanent Secretary for Lands Mr.  Pene Baleinabuli, who outlined the plans of the Fiji Government and challenged to the profession to detail a “plan for the future”.


Papers from Mr. Mike Linz covered the many interesting aspects of the Pipeline Survey in PNG and the Napal Oil Refinery.


The first days afternoon session saw a presentation from Ms Losana Rokotuibau discuss the aspects of the Subdivision of Land Act and Regulations and how the Planners rely on the work from the Surveying profession.


Technical papers were presented by Ian Truscott, covering Simplicity in the field and Andrej Mocicka covering LandXML in the real world saw the first day to a close.


The second day saw a presentation from Mrs. Maria Ubitau presenting on the various Town Planning issues confronting the Fiji Government.


Mausio Anise from the FNU (Fiji National University) presented on the new Surveying course being offered.

There are two universities in Fiji running survey courses - the SPU (South Pacific University) and the FNU (Fiji National University). Currently the Fiji Surveyors Board only recognises the SPU course for License accreditation. FNU are looking to see what they needed to do to get accreditation as they believed that they had the same course content for Surveying. The Fiji Institute of Surveyors will be working with the FNU to lobby the Fiji Surveyors Board to accredit them. The FNU were also asking if the SSSI could assist them in assessing their course to determine its suitability for Surveyors Board Accreditation.


Tony  LaCiura from The United States World Aid Organisation gave an enlightening and entertaining presentation on many of the Town Planning issues he has faced at the Nadi City Council.


The afternoon session was the Fiji Institute of Surveyors meeting where many items were discussed and the presentation from SSSI on the Small Island Developing States (SIDS) was discussed.


The final presentation from Samuela Naicegucegu talked about the need for Fiji to look at changing from their current Geodetic network on WGS72 to the current WGS84. Discussion from this clearly showed that they want to and know that they need to change, but they are not sure on how to.


They asked if the Australian Surveying profession could assist and guide them in this transformation.


There was also a great deal of interest in setting up a MOU between the SSSI and the FIS. They are keen to improve relationships between the two organisations and asked if this could be established.


The next conference has been moved back to the old time of February to coincide with their AGM


Andrej Mocicka

Member SSSI – Land Surveying Commission


SSSI Land Surveying Commission Report


45th ASPNG Congress 2011


There were over 100 delegates over the four days at the lovely Madang Resort & Kalibobo Village. The delegates came from all corners of PNG and enjoyed an informative and entertaining 4 days of technical papers, social networking and some unscheduled (Hydrographic and Orienteering) activities for the more adventurous.


The ASPNG conferences always feature a forum, where members can discuss what issues are current and possible solutions. As in years past, this generates lively debate and the 45th ASPNG was no different. The appointment of the new Surveyor General Mr. Luthor Sipison earlier this year was greeted with approval and acclamation. His appointment has generated a great deal of enthusiasm in the profession with Luthor indicating that one of his main priorities is to get the Surveyors Board functioning again after a four year lull. During the Forum and AGM, the status of the MOU between SSSI and ASPNG was raised to which it was indicated that SSSI was waiting for information on what ASPNG requires from SSSI with regard to professional assistance and or guidance.


It was recognised at the Forum and AGM, that ASPNG needed to detail their needs to SSSI. Presentation of the SSSI “one year on” also mentioned the upcoming SSSC to be held in Wellington along with the Transit of Venus and its significance to the region as well as the SSSI Land Surveying Commission Conference to be held in Melbourne in 2012.


Conference opened by Governor of Madang Hon. James Gelak GAU

Key Note Speaker Hon Sir Arnold Amet

There were numerous presentations over the four days as follows:


- Richard Stanaway

- Aligning Local Transverse Mercator (LTM) Grids with UTM Grids such as Papua New Guinea Map Grid


- New ASPNG Web Site


- “Connecting a Survey to PNG94 and MSL using GNSS work shop


- Dennis J Puniard prepared the paper on the Royal Australian Survey Corps Association titled: Australia’s role in Mapping PNG from Colonial Outpost to Independent Nation. (Presented by Masang Bandindo)


Note: That on the Sunday 24 July 2011, there was a Royal Australian Survey Corps Association Memorial Plaque Unveiling Ceremony at Ela Beach Remembrance Park Port Moresby PNG which is detailed later.


-Jan Van Der Kevie – Evolution of Geodetic Surveying in PNG.


-Emil Bakanau -Survey and Construction of pacific marine park Industrial zone (PMIZ) Vidar Madang


-Masang Bandindo – Surveyors Role in  LNG Projects


-Alan Featherstonehaugh – An accurate & Affordable Digital Terrain Modelling Solution (Using small unmanned aircraft systems and Digital Image Processing)


-Richard Baia – The Yandera Story: Customary Land Boundaries Demarcation and Surveying for Yandera Copper – Molybdenum Project


-Walley Wigbert – Erosion, Rehabilitation Works Considering Economical, Environmental and Social Impact.


-Peter Ludlow – presentation on Leica range of equipment and other equipment available from CR Kennedy.


-Andrej Mocicka

                - Survey Live – Bringing the office into the Field

                - SSSI, one year on!

                - Creative uses for Surveying and Engineering Software


Items of interest

The new surveyor General for PNG has been appointed, Mr. Luthor Sipison

Next years conference will be in August as the PNG elections will be held in July 2012.


Special Interest

On the Sunday 24th July 2011, a ceremony was held at the ELA Beach Rememberance Park in Port Moresby PNG. Where  the Returned & Services League of Australia, Port Moresby Sub Branch  held a ceremnony to unveil the Royal Australian Survey Corps Association Memorial Plaque.


Welcome address by Mr Bryan Wareing, secretary Port Moresby RSL.


Guest Speaker, Lt Col Robert Skitch (Ret), Royal Australian Survey Corps Association.


The Australian High Commissioner for PNG, Mr Ian Kemish, also addressed the occasion.


The official unveiling was performed by His Excellency Grand Chief Sir Michael Ogio CGM, BCMG, St J Governor General of PNG.


The Memorial was blessed by Major Philip Maxwell from the Salvation Army.


Wreath’s were layed by:


- His Excellency Grand Chief Sir Michael Ogio, CGM, BCMG, St J Governor General of PNG.


-Mr Ian Kenish,  Australian High Commissioner PNG


-Mr Pecy Long, RA Survey Corps Assoc.


-Mr Mick Pye, President Port Moresby Sub Branch


-Brigadier General Francis Agwi DMS OBE, Commander PNGDF


-Colonel Mark Shephard CSC, Head of Australian Defence Staff – PNG


The Ode was read by -Mr Mick Pye, President Port Moresby Sub Branch

A moving and memorable occasion. (More details will be available on the ASPNG web site



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