2017 National General Elections

Basil concerned over proposed election law changes

Basil questioned the role and official obligation of the PNG Electoral Commissioner Patilias Gamato in independently overseeing the success of general elections.

“Mr Gamato must be able to explain his organisation’s original advice and submission to the National Executive Council (NEC) that has provided the inspiration for these major proposed changes to PNG’s election laws,” says Basil.

PM promises efficient, effective elections

“National elections are the opportunity for our people to have their say and elect the Members of their choosing.

“The Nation’s Electoral Commission has been preparing for this election since 2012, and I am confident that 2017 elections will take place in a transparent way that will deliver certainty for our people.

“We cannot allow the wastage and exorbitant cost that was seen at previous elections to continue.”

Weed out ‘money politics’: Gelu

Registrar of Political Parties, Dr Alphonse Gelu, told Loop PNG that ‘Money Politics’ has plagued PNG elections killing this key democratic process.

“We have to fight against that particular phenomena which have greatly undermined the conduct of elections since the 1980’s,” Gelu said.

Reports and allegations of bribery, undue influence and rigging of elections are common during general elections.

There have also been countless bi-elections following successful legal battles exposing illegal conduct during National Elections by candidates.

Police prepare for coming elections

Assistant Commissioner of Police (ACP) Peter Guinness hosted the meeting in Ramu for his four provincial commands, namely metropolitan superintendent Lae, Morobe, Madang and Eastern Highlands.

He says while they focus on the election next year, their command's planning starts this month rather than just before the elections.

"I have gathered all my Provincial Police Commanders and Police Station Commanders as well as the line managers to plan for our election operations next year,” says ACP Guiness.

Final 2017 Common Roll update to be completed

Electoral Commissioner Patilias Gamato says he is expecting the final Electoral Roll to be completed and printed by the end of March 2017.

“I should expect all provinces to complete their field work by mid-December or before Christmas Day.

“The month of January should be used only for any flow-over but only for those big provinces. February should be the month for roll display and objections.”

Stop following intending candidates for free money: Leader

Upper-Lower LLG council president from Kerowagi District, Chimbu, and Deputy Governor, James Kendeyagl, issued the challenge during the recent signing of the K5 million partnership with the Coffee Industry Corporation (CIC).

“It shows one thing, you’re are lazy person,” continues Kendeyagl.

“I urge you to return to your coffee gardens to live a sustainable and honest life

Returning officers appointed for 2017 General Election

Gamato said the appointment of all the Returning Officers (ROs) and Assistant Returning Officers (AROs) have been confirmed on September 12, 2016.

“No new appoints for ROs and AROs will be made unless death occurs as in the case of RO for Finschaffen district in Morobe Province. A full listing of the ROs and AROs will be published in papers (media) soon,” he said.

Meanwhile, Central Province conducted training for its ROs, AROs and LLG supervisors this week at the Villa Karai Resort at Gaire village, outside Port Moresby.

Department yet to get resignation list of public servants

“The records from departments and provincial administrations haven’t been sent to me yet. Only a few and (it will) be updated as time goes by,” DPM secretary John Kali told Loop PNG.

Section 56 of the Public Services (Management) Act 2014 states that an officer who wishes to contest a national election must resign no less than six months to the date of the issue of writs, and for local level government elections, one month before.

Party executives must resign to contest elections

This is the message from the Registrar of the Integrity Political Parties and Candidates Commission, Dr Alphonse Gelu.

Dr Gelu said it was normal practice for party executives to contest elections without resigning from the positions they were elected too by party members.

He said if they were unsuccessful, they would return and take up the position again.

“This behaviour has to stop,” says Gelu.

“The thing we want to instill in our political party systems is following proper procedures and this is one of the issues.”