Domestic Politics. Papua New Guinea press review

Police Minister of Papua New Guinea (PNG) Bryan Kramer says that after eight years of the Peter O’Neill government’s reign, the police force, once described as the pride of the country, was reduced to a private security business, servant corrupt politicians and dodgy foreign businessmen. PNG Police Minister works on reform and improves the police force. [1]

At the same time, Police reservists urged Commissioner of Police David Manning to pay their outstanding fees and allowances before standing them down. The reservists based in Port Moresby told that police were yet to pay their allowances from the 2018 APEC summit and the recent COVID-19 operations. Earlier Mr. Manning had ordered all reservists to be stood down by Tuesday (September 15) due to widespread abuse by them. [2]

On the 24th of September 2020 started Goroka (Eastern Highlands Province) by-election, with 22 candidates. [3-4]

Pooling for the Goroka by-election will for the first time see women voting in separate polling booths. Acting Electoral Commissioner, Simon Sinai, said this is to promote gender equality and also allow women to vote freely. The Goroka by-election will be a model for the electoral commission to prepare for the upcoming National General Elections in 2022. [5]

Police Minister Bryan Kramer said that cameras will be used at polling stations during the Goroka by-election to prevent election rigging. The cameras were purchased from Australia. [6-7]

In turn, Eastern Highlands Governor Peter Numu is calling on voters from the Goroka electorate to be responsible and ensure free and fair polling is observed during the court-ordered Goroka by-election. According to Eastern Highlands Governor, the provincial government has been working closely with the electoral commission and the police to ensure polling and counting run smoothly. [8]

The counting of votes cast is expected to begin on Monday (28 September) and take three weeks. [9]

However, Deputy Prime Minister, Minister for Justice and Attorney-General Davis Steven said that the Government is working quietly to address gaps and weaknesses in policies and laws that governed the country. According to Mr. Steven, work was progressing with some positive results in the illicit trade and black economy. Deputy Prime Minister also stated that prosecution against illegal logging activities in Northern Province (Oro Province) would start soon. Northern Province Governor Gary Juffa recently reported about 40 foreigners in logging camps allegedly without work permits and travel documents. Immigration and Border Security Minister Westly Nukundj also confirmed that 21 foreigners were arrested for alleged breached of immigration and labour laws. [10]

A Court has ordered Aitape-Lumi MP Patrick Pruaitch to pay more than PGK1.6 million (US$450 thousand) to the Kina Bank for defaulting on an overdraft facility agreement he signed in July 2014. On the 11th of July 2014, Kina Bank approved an overdraft facility of up to PGK1.5 million (US$420 thousand) to Mr. Pruaitch for his personal use. In June 2018, Kina Bank issued a notice of demand to Mr. Pruaitch after the overdraft facility had gone into arrears. [11] [1]

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