Category Archives: Regional

Proposal eyed for Motu Koitabu seat

August 18, 2017  
                            Main Stories

Prime Minister Peter O’Neill (pictured) says he will ensure that the Motu Koitabu people in the National Capital District have
a voice at national level.

O’Neill was responding to a query during a breakfast with the business community in Port Moresby yesterday whether there was a legislation that the government could use to ensure a seat for the

Motu Koitabuans in the 2022 election.
“I made a firm commitment during the elections that we will certainly introduce legislation to capture one seat for Motu Koitabu alone in the city,” he said.

“I will be putting that proposal together and, of course, I’m certain that is the commitment PNC (People’s National Congress) has made, you can be rest assured of PNC’s support.

“But again it will require legislative numbers which will require support from our friends on
the other side, but we will talk to them.
“I have made a firm
commitment and I will follow it through.”


Hosting an APEC Meeting is a very Effective way to Promote Tourism & Culture

*** Regional APEC Meetings to Deliver Real Benefits Around the Nation ***

Tourism will generate thousands of jobs in the coming years, and the hosting of APEC events in growing tourism hubs will make an important contribution to this growing sector.

The Prime Minister, Hon. Peter O’Neill CMG MP, was speaking with around two thousand PNC supporters in Kavieng when he assured them that their current local member’s threat to cancel the hosting of APEC next year is just hot air.

He said the election of Martin Aini as the PNC Candidate for Kavieng Open is the only way the district can advance with a dedicated elected leader who is committed to the interests of the district and the country.

“These claims by a single opposition member that he would cancel APEC cannot be taken seriously,” the Prime Minister said.

“I have already had to assure our APEC partner economies that he is just one opposition member from 111 in the Parliament, and has a record for making highly questionable statements just to get attention.

“If you ask almost any other member of the Parliament if they agree with Papua New Guinea hosting APEC in 2018, they would be supportive.

“The Kavieng Member’s threat to cancel APEC has also backfired because it would mean cancelling the APEC Tourism Minister’s meeting, part of which will take place in his district.

“The Member for Kavieng would take APEC away from his own electorate just political mischief.

“His four party members do not support him, and even the Opposition Leader is against such foolish tactics.

“Hosting an APEC meeting is a very effective way to promote tourism and culture in regional centres, as well as encourage skills transfer and local capacity development.”

The Prime Minister said people around the country are tired of candidates who are standing without any clear policies and who just want to run the country down.

“The only people who are knocking the economy are in the opposition.

“They have spent this whole campaign making false claims, talking the economy down, and never offering any real alternatives.

“The current Member for Kavieng has demonstrated that he is not in this election for his people, but for himself.

“That is another reason why the people of Kavieng need to elect an intelligent and balanced leader, and that is what you have in Martin Aini.

“Martin Aini is a leader who will work hard in his electorate and work in the interests of his people and the nation.”

The comments by the current Kavieng Member are at odds with his earlier statements where he embraced advancing national economic development through deepening engagements with APEC.

Prime Minister’s Office PNG June 1, 2017 at 5.41 pm

Mass Jailbreak at Buimo


There was a break out Buimo CS in Lae just before lunch on Friday (12 May).

An officer on the ground confirmed this and said the detainees broke out from the male detainee compound.

It is not confirmed how many prisoners broke out and escaped but the CS officer said some were captured and the total number of escapees will be disclosed at a later date.

Police and CS personnel are searching the vicinity near Buimo for the escapees at Drai Wara.

The CS Commander could not be reached.

PNG’s WTO Representation


PAPUA New Guinea is amongst other Pacific Island countries excluding Fiji and Solomon Islands to have permanent representation in the World Trade Organisation.
This was revealed by the Secretary for Trade Commerce and Industry John Andrias yesterday.

Mr Andrias said however some are still in the process of establishing representation with the WTO.

He said PNG made a conscious decision to join the WTO and be part of the Multilateral Trading System (MTS) because it believes that the system provides security and stability in trade for all its members even more so for the smallest and most vulnerable economies.

“We believe the system was developed with the purpose of promoting prosperity for all its members,” he stated.

Therefore, Mr Andrias said Fiji and Solomon islands have a permanent representation in Geneva to help them so they have a mission.

PNG is represented from its Brussels mission and due to the distance they are not there on a day to day basis to attend to all the negotiations taking place in Geneva.

“We have done some submissions over the last three years, we have NEC endorsement but to date we are still looking at ways to get a mission established in Geneva because Geneva is a strategic location where you have the UN missions like WTO, ILO there so it will not be a mistake to have a permanent representation in Geneva where we will be able to safe guard our interests and also to look at ways to get more benefits and developments.

The rest of us who are members of WTO, rely on Pacific Islands Secretariat through Madam Mere Falemaka to represent us,” he said.

Mr Andrias said there is a small dedicated team in Geneva that monitors all the negotiations on all areas including export or fisheries subsidies issues which were not discussed or on the table over the last 16 years.

“So for us as a country and a region that that is dependent on fisheries, we are to ensure that there are proper rules and policies for us.

“Our interest is to be accommodated so we have to be in there to ensure that our interest in terms of policies and development aspirations are
all captured in the export subsidy rules that will be negotiated and accepted by all members once everyone agrees to it,” he said.

2821 want to contest


A TOTAL of 2821 candidates have signed the official form to contest the 111 seats in the 2017 national election – including 13 vying for Prime Minister Peter O’Neill’s Ialibu-Pangia seat.

PNG Electoral Commission media officer Alphones Muapi said the 2821 had filled and signed Form 29 which had all their personal details.

But he said the exact number of candidates contesting each of the 111 seats would be finalised when nominations closed on April 27.

In 2012, 3435 candidates contested.

It is expected that the number this year may be much less if the nomination fee is increased to K10,000 from K1000.

Parliament is expected to decide on the fees when it sits next week.

Muapi confirmed that 12 people would be challenging O’Neill for the Ialibu-Pangia seat in Southern Highlands. In 2012, eight, including O’Neill, vied for the seat.

There are;

Southern Highlands

32 vying for the Southern Highlands Regional seat,

29 for Imbonggu,

49 for Kagua-Erave,

17 for Mendi and

25 for Nipa-Kutubu.

Western and Gulf


53 contesting the Western Regional seat,

44 in Middle Fly,

68 in North Fly, and

58 in South Fly.

In Gulf,

54 are interested in the Regional seat,

67 in Kerema and

57 in Kikori.


29 to contest the Manus Regional seat and

32 for Manus Open.

In the National Capital District,

47 are vying for Governor Powes Parkop’s seat,

61 North East,

44 North West and

18 South.


6 vying for the Bougainville Regional seat,

18 for Central Bougainville,

28 North Bougainville and

12 for South Bougainville.

New Ireland

16 for the Regional seat,

9 for Namatanai and

23 for Kavieng.

West New Britain

12 are vying for the Regional seat,

30 for Talasea and

19 for Kandrian/Gloucester.

East New Britain

15 for Regional,

16 in Gazelle

23 in Kokopo

11 in Pomio and

8 in Rabaul.


37 Regional,

45 Komo-Margarima,

16 Tari-Pori and

36 Koroba-Lake Kopiago .

Milne Bay

26 are vying for the Regional seat,

16 in Esa’ala,

31 in Kiriwina-Goodenough,

20 in Alotau and

2 in Samarai-Murua.


33 Central Regional seat,

24 Abau,

42 Goilala,

36 Rigo and

28 Kairuku-Hiri.


39 candidates Northern Regional seat,

26 Ijivitari and

46 Sohe.


28 for Madang Regional seat,

11 Bogia ,

11 Madang Open ,

14 Middle Ramu ,

7 Rai Coast,

14 Sumkar and

13 Usino-Bundi.

West Sepik

31 candidates for West Sepik Regional seat,

18 Aitape-Lumi ,

13 Nuku ,

17 Telefomin and

20 Vanimo-Green.

East Sepik

27 are contesting the Governor’s seat held since Independence by Sir Michael Somare,

16 for Ambunti/Drekikir,

32 for Angoram,

21 for Maprik,

36 in Wewak,

29 in Wosera-Gawi  and

19 in Yangoru-Saussia.


15 want Governor Kelly Naru’s seat,

21 for Bulolo ,

43 for Finschhafen ,

25 for Huon Gulf,

23 for Kabwum,

49 for Lae,

24 for Markham,

25 for Menyamya/Aseki,

40 for Nawaeb and

39 for Tewai-Siassi.


28 for Enga Regional seat,

Kandep 25,

Kompiam/Ambum 36,

Porgera/Lagaip 46,

Wabag 25 and

Wapenamanda 29.

Eastern Highlands

Eastern Highlands Regional 24,

Daulo 22,

Goroka 15,

Henganofi 14 ,

Kainantu 18,

Lufa 17,

Obura-Waninara 7,

Okapa 30 and

Unggai-Bena 9.


Jiwaka Regional has 37,

Anglimp South Waghi 15,

Jimi 22,

North Waghi 22.

Western Highlands

Western Highlands Regional has 25 candidates,

Dei 32,

Hagen 22,

Mul-Baiyer 29 and

Tambul/Nebilyer 24.



Lilly Be’Soer is a leader, a Women’s Human Rights Defender and a respected woman from Jiwaka Province, Papua New Guinea. She’s also one of the warmest people you’ll ever meet.

Her smile makes you smile; she’s the first person to break tension with a joke, and modestly laughs off people calling her the ‘big boss’, despite the obvious reverence of those around her. She’s the sort of person that would take a complete stranger into her home, give them tea, and let them bare their soul. It’s actually what she does every day.

Lilly is the leader of IWDA partner Voice for Change, an organisation providing shelter, counselling, legal referrals and support for women who have endured horrific physical, sexual and emotional violence.


Some women will walk hours from neighbouring villages to reach the Voice for Change office. For fear of their partners finding out, they’ll often leave the house before light breaks.

Lilly is often up at 4:30am every morning to plan her day’s work, get breakfast ready for her children and do other maintenance work for her home and the Voice for Change office. She often attends to women who come early to the office by offering them tea, company, and support until the counsellors and other staff get in. Throughout the day, women will arrive in waves, distressed, nervous, but bravely seeking advice on what their options are.

Some women have been beaten badly, and Voice for Change supports them to access care in this difficult time. Some are trying to leave a partner, but aren’t aware of their legal rights, or need support to navigate the court system. Some have reported abuse, but are struggling to get support from those around them who are reluctant to get involved in ‘family matters’.

Last week, something awful happened in their office. A woman fleeing a violent partner had made it to Voice for Change’s office for some advice and counselling. While she was talking with one of the staff members, her abuser followed her into the office and stabbed her in the leg so hard he fractured her bone. The knife missed the Voice for Change staff member by an inch.

She lost a lot of blood, but Voice for Change staff managed to get her to hospital, and expect her to slowly recover. Her attacker is in hiding, and the woman is terrified of what will happen once she’s released, and he’s still at large. The staff member fainted after the incident and is traumatised, but safe. The incident was shocking, and has left all staff deeply distressed.

The work that Lilly and her fellow Women’s Human Rights Defenders do saves women’s lives. But it often means putting their own safety at risk. Men will periodically stand outside the boundaries of Voice for Change’s office shouting abuse.

Last month, one man had severely beaten his partner, and Voice for Change provided her with counselling, support and legal advice. He retaliated by throwing a brick into their office.

These attacks have left Lilly shaken. She is worried for her staff, scared for the survivors who bravely come to ask for help, and concerned for her 5 children, who are often helping out around the office.

But Lilly will never stop her work. As we speak, she’s got contractors lopping down trees around her house so she can start to build a fence around the office. They don’t have enough money yet to complete the fence, but it’s a start. And as one of the only services offering this kind of support to women in Papua New Guinea’s highlands, Lilly will do all she can to keep these women safe.

Lilly and Voice for Change are very well respected in the community. In addition to their work with survivors, they run frequent workshops with both women and men about women’s rights, gender equality and violence prevention.

But not everyone likes that they support women to learn about their rights under the law and access justice – particularly the abusers, their families and communities.

When a woman gets married in Jiwaka, she leaves her family to join her husband’s tribe.

Anna* was living with her husband and their children when one day, he brought home another woman and said she was moving in. He wanted a divorce and he was keeping the children. Anna had to get out.

It’s hard to imagine being placed in such a horrible position, and as anyone would, Anna expressed her hurt, horror and anger at being betrayed by the person who was supposed to love her. She’d left her family village to marry him, and she told him she had rights.

Her husband attacked her with a bush knife, seriously wounding her before she managed to get word to Voice for Change, who reported him to the police and got him arrested. Anna thought she was safe, but soon, truckloads of men from her husband’s tribe were heading to her home, armed with bush knives, axes and sticks. They wanted to attack her.

Anna called Voice for Change, who, with the police, rushed to get to Anna before her attackers did. Lilly thought they wouldn’t make it, and they’d find Anna badly injured. Luckily, they managed to get her to safety, just in time. She was accommodated at Voice for Change’s Resource Centre and after two days, she and her two kids were sent safety off to her family.

These survivors aren’t just facing their dangerous husbands. They’re facing their families, friends and communities. And without Voice for Change, they’d often be doing it alone.

It’s tough, draining work. Lilly some cultural norms are obstacles. Many men view women as inferior, something Voice for Change work to alter through their community awareness workshops. Women themselves are often raised to believe violence is okay, and are not given access to information about their rights or how they can access justice. Police and other services lack resources to reach all women.

But Lilly sees perceptions changing. Men who have previously been abusers have attended Voice for Change’s workshops and become advocate for women’s rights. She’s seeing an increase in suspects being reported. And the ripple effect of women who visit Voice for Change sharing their stories means communities are becoming more and more aware of women’s rights.

Asking Lilly what keeps her going is almost redundant. She has made this her life’s work. When she’s not in the office, she’s attending meetings with police, judges and community leaders. She never stops working, because she doesn’t feel like her role is ever done. She has daughters, and wants to make things better for them.

*name changed

picture: Lilly Be’Soer of Voice for Change. Photo: Gemma Carr

PM O’Neill Welcomes PM Sogavare on Second MSG Capital Visit

The Prime Minister of Papua New Guinea, Hon. Peter O’Neill CMG MP, said is looking to members of the Melanesian Spearhead Group (MSG) to work together on advancing labour mobility in the region.

PM O’Neill made the comments after meeting with the Prime Minister of the Solomon Islands, Hon. Manasseh Sogavare MP, in Port Moresby yesterday.

The visit was Prime Minister Sogavare’s second Capital Visit to Papua New Guinea as Chair of the MSG.

The Prime Ministers further discussed MSG membership composition, expanding trade and enhancing operations of the MSG Secretariat.

“There is tremendous opportunity before MSG members to enhance the capacity for people from around our region to work in different countries.

“The world is getting smaller and people want to travel between countries for work and business.

“We do not have a territorial model in our own country, and we believe in creating opportunities for travel.

“In Papua New Guinea, for example, we are a nation of a thousand tribes where our unity comes from our diversity.

“It does not matter if you are from Madang, Mendi, Bougainville, Aloutau or anywhere in the country, you are free to move around and settle.

“By establishing the right procedures, we would like to see people bring their skills to Papua New Guinea, and for our people to travel to build careers and strength social interaction.”

In their discussion, Prime Minister O’Neill stated Papua New Guinea’s position on MSG membership as an issue that will continue to be discussed between members.

“There are sensitivities to consider if we are to continue this dialogue in a respectful manner, and to build mutual understanding in order to make progress.”

PM O’Neill said he would like to see an increase in trade between MSG countries that would grow the regional economy.

“Papua New Guinea is ready to expand regional trade, while respecting the developing nature of many sectors in our countries,” PM O’Neill said.

“When we open up further trade this must also create jobs in each of our countries, because if we do not stimulate employment and business our countries will not develop well.”

On the issue of improving the management and output of the MSG Secretariat, the Prime Ministers agreed that ongoing reform and review is essential.

“We will do all we can to ensure we have a fully functioning MSG Secretariat that adapts to the evolving news of Melanesian countries.

“Our members and the Secretariat will continue to enhance operations of the Secretariat for the benefit our people.”

Prime Minister’s Office PNG March 15, 207 5.20 pm
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