L-R: Mr Angobe, Acting First Secretary FODE & Inclusive Education, Mr Wingi, Deputy Secretary NDoE & Chairman of Governing Council –FODE, Mr Mari OTDF EMPS, and Mr Anthony Rayappan, Principal FODE

The Ok Tedi Development Foundation (OTDF) signs a partnership Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the National Department of Education to provide Flexible Open Distance Education (FODE) program for learners in Western Province.

Mr. Andrew Angobe, the acting First Assistant Secretary of FODE and Inclusive Education, highlighted the pivotal role OTDF has played as a Registered Study Center (RSC). The division of FODE & Inclusive Education values and recognizes the work OTDF has been doing in providing a pathway for the students who dropped out from the mainstream education system.

“We extend our appreciation to OTDF and commend everyone involved in the delivery of FODE in Western Province.”

The Deputy Secretary for National Department of Education (NDoE) and Governing Council Chairman-FODE, Mr Walipe Wingi, also expressed his gratitude to OTDF for its enduring commitment to deliver FODE service in the Fly River corridor despite the many challenges.

“It is not easy to deliver FODE to remote areas, and especially in Western Province, where you have geographical constraints and logistic challenges, you (OTDF) have done well and the department is pleased with the work the Foundation is doing, the department remains committed to support partners like OTDF to deliver FODE.

This commitment was formalized during a MOU signing ceremony on Friday, March 1, reaffirming OTDF’s enduring partnership with FODE & Inclusive Education. As part of this collaboration, NDoE FODE will ratify the admissions made by OTDF and provide all learning materials including print, electronic copies and audio – visual materials, and training and orientation of tutors and administrative support staff for effective delivery of FODE in Western Province.

National FODE supports OTDF

Mr Wingi, Deputy Secretary NDoE & Chairman of Governing Council –FODE (L) presents the certificate to Mr Mari OTDF EMPS

Mr Anthony Rayappan, the Principal of FODE, advised that OTDF is always up-to-date with all his payments for its students and commended OTDF for its support. This partnership is very important as it strengthens our commitment and working relationship to support the development of PNG in education.

Students from various locations including Tabubil, Ningrum, Aiambak, Bosset, Kaviananga, Kasa, Nakaku, Tapila, Kawiapo, and Daru are enrolling in full correspondence and upgrading programs, underscoring the widespread impact of this initiative.

Mr. Andrew Mari, the Executive Manager of Program Services at OTDF, shed light on the challenges faced by FODE, including the shortage of trained personnel, inadequate infrastructure, and limited funding at the provincial and district levels. He reiterated the core objective of enhancing access to quality and affordable education, particularly for students who have discontinued conventional schooling. Mr. Mari acknowledged the support and recognition from NDoE and advised that OTDF highly values this partnership and look forward to fulfil its commitment under the MOU.

“Since 2019, FODE has supported approximately 4000 students who have either pursued tertiary education or secured gainful employment, thus significantly contributing to human resource development in the province.”

Mr. Anthony Rayappan, the Principal of FODE in Port Moresby, assured timely printing and distribution of educational materials, emphasizing the collective responsibility to enhance literacy rates and educational attainment.

The recently signed three-year agreement further strengthen the  collaborative effort between OTDF and FODE in delivering educational programs in Western Province, marking a significant advance towards educational development and empowerment in the region.

OTDF Media