PA not needed in Western Province
The communities justify this by saying Pebo does not meet certain expectations required of a Provincial Administrator.
Yesterday, the petition from the South Fly community was presented to Deputy Governor and Morehead LLG President, Wapri Gainu, in Daru, whilst the North Fly petition was presented to Provincial Executive Council member, Rose Canisius.
In a statement prepared by the communities, they have called for the appointment of a Provincial Administrator who is neutral and able to address the needs of people through transparent processes.
“We want an Administrator who is in no way affiliated to or have links with any politician.
“We want an administrator who is committed to working together with the people to understand the real needs of the province,” they said.
“We want an administrator who will ensure that all proper processes in tendering projects and awarding projects is done in a transparent manner.
“We do not believe that the nominee for Provincial Administrator, Brian Pebo, meets our requirements. He is not needed in Western Province.”
The communities say the Province has been ignored by successive governments despite so much money being contributed to the national purse through the Ok Tedi Mine.
It is only through projects initiated through the mine’s operations that have been their saving grace, they say.
They have also questioned how funds placed in a Trust Account, controlled by the Department of Mining, has been used.
“Many people from Western Province are wondering how the hundreds of millions have been spent from within this Trust account as there is nothing to show for it on the ground.
“Our people have been fighting a court battle to stop all sorts of claims on the Trust account by dubious projects that provide minimal impact to the province.
“The Provincial Administrator, apart from playing a very important role in providing leadership to the public service in the province, has the added responsibility of being on the Advisory Board that approves the projects which draw down funds from this Trust account.
“It is thus the wish of the people that after years of mysterious schemes, nil acquittals and money vanishing into thin air, that we be very careful about those who are selected to have oversight over our money,” read the statement.
(Meeting in Kiunga by concerned locals)