Sir Nagora expresses sadness over Basil’s move

Sir Nagora Bogan has expressed profound sadness and dismay over the move by Sam Basil to the People’s National Congress-led Government.

Basil along with other 11 MPs from the PANGU Pati moved to the Government side on Monday, Sept 11, 2017.

The prominent Morobean leader said: “It is indeed a disparaging verdict on the leadership style, demeanour and values of the honourable Member from Bulolo.

“I say this because PANGU has a rich history and record of leading Papua New Guinea out of colonialism to self-rule and many voters around the country were happy to see Sam Basil, who got re-elected in 2012 as an independent Member of Parliament, take the reins of the Party in 2016.

“It is also a nostalgic change-over of guard considering that Morobe has been a bastion for PANGU Pati with eminent leaders like Tony Voutas, Sir Boyamo Sali, Sir Jerry Nalau and Tony Ila.”

Sir Nagora added that the founding father of PANGU Pati, Grand Chief Sir Michael Somare, symbolically handed Basil the leadership baton when he presented him with the PANGU flag during the last term of Parliament and wished him well in revitalising and rebuilding the well-respected Party.

“Support grew for Basil who aggressively used social media and the Party brand to propel himself as a corruption fighter who felt the pain of ordinary people over the last six years.

“He garnered grassroots support from many places around the country. Even though Sir Michael was a member of the National Alliance Party up until his retirement, he spent a good part of his time in the recent elections campaigning and supporting PANGU candidates, including Basil.”

He said as a result, PANGU Pati did extremely well, especially in Morobe Province where the party won 9 out of 10 seats.

“As Morobeans, we should be proud of our voting record and solidarity. We chose 9 out of 10 times to say 'no you do not have our mandate' to join the O'Neill led Government, a repressive regime that has grossly mismanaged the economy of our great nation.

“As Morobeans we have been clear in our rejection, and yet, he takes it upon himself to ignore the resoundingly clear voice of his people,” continues Sir Nagora.

“Whose voice are you listening to? Because the people of Morobe spoke clearly at the ballot box.

“So it is with disbelief, that many people including myself, are finding it hard to fathom his move to the very people he stood against during his campaign.

“His words ‘friend to all, enemy to one’ in relation to Prime Minister Peter O'Neill are as clear in my mind today as the day they were plastered all over social media.

“I empathise with the people of Morobe and others around the country who today feel a sense of betrayal after hearing the news.”

Hence, he said any reasons proffered for the move will not have a leg to stand on because the Constitution is clear whether you are in Opposition or in government, you are entitled to grants and other constitutionally guaranteed services from the National Government to every electorate of this country.  

This sentiment has also been echoed by ordinary people from all districts of Morobe and residents of Lae city.

Freddy Mou