Opposition Leader, Patrick Pruaitch in a statement said Basil’s decision surprised leaders within the Alliance although the public received early warning through media reports that a crossover was about to happen.
“A formal announcement was delayed allowing for negotiations on the ‘30 pieces of silver’ needed to entice 12 Pangu Pati members across to Government, rather than the initial nine or 10 MPs,” he said.
Prime Minister, Peter O’Neill, currently has 73 MPs in the ruling coalition, giving him the ability to dominate Parliament and to bulldoze through any legislation.
Pruaitch said: “As Opposition Leader, there are two overriding policy issues where the Alliance will adopt a strong and united stance and uphold the public interest.
“First, to underwrite improved living standards, and greater prosperity for our nation, it is of utmost importance that a world class Bill on an Independent Commission Against Corruption (ICAC) is adopted by Parliament. The Alliance will vigorously oppose a watered-down version.
“I am hopeful many Government MPs will exercise a conscience vote, and ensure that an impactful ICAC Bill receives solid Parliamentary endorsement.
“Secondly, the Alliance will stand united against the mindless borrowing – and waste – that has been a centerpiece of the O’Neill Government policy in the past five years.
“With only three months to go, the Supplementary Budget in this coming session of Parliament will not fix this year’s deficit blowout to K2.8 billion.
“The Alliance will ensure the 2018 budget focusses on improved service delivery, especially education, health and law and order, while minimising inappropriate expenditure, borrowing and debt.”
Basil neither confirms or denies rumours
Pruaitch on PANGU members’ alleged move
Reasons explaining move to be released: Basil
PNC denies extending invitation to MPs