Parliament resumes today

Prime Minister Peter O’Neil said the session will focus on the first readings of the electoral legislations to increase the nomination fees and decreasing the campaign period from eight to four weeks.

O’Neill made the announcement on Monday at the inaugural National Press Club in Port Moresby.

Other bills to be tabled include ICAC and Ombudsman, as well as others.

The parliament will then be adjourned for its last session in March and then recess for the 2017 National elections until the formation of the new government in September.

Gelu hopes revised law is passed

Despite being approved by the National Executive Council (NEC) in 2014 after a review of the OLIPPAC beginning in 2012, the revised law is yet to pass the floor of Parliament.

In October, last year, the revised law appeared on the business paper however a lack of numbers on the floor of Parliement failed to see the law passed.

Parliament to resume on Jan 24 with crucial Bills on agenda

Parliament will be in recess for the 2017 National Elections until the formation of the new government in September.

The main Bills to be addressed during this remaining parliament session will include the increased nomination fees and the reduced campaign period.

Prime Minister Peter O’Neill told Parliament in August last year that the election cost is increasing yearly and the PNG Electoral Commission must find a way to help subsidise the cost.

He said increasing the nomination fees for candidates is an area the government is looking into.   

Treasurer clears confusion on Appropriation Bill

Pruaitch issued a statement after confusion arose from the Opposition about the figures in the Appropriation Bill for 2017.

“These are the figures provided in my budget address, last week and included in Volume 2 and 3 of the budget documents released in Parliament, which uses standardised Government Financial Statistics 1986 data,” Pruaitch said.

Duma slaps Wingti in Parliament Chamber

MPs present in the Chamber were shocked as they witnessed something most  unusual happened.

Hagen MP and State Enterprises Minister William Duma walked straight to Western Highlands Governor and former Prime Minister Paias Wingti and slapped him on the face and walked off.

The motive behind Duma’s action's are not known.

Members beside Wingti had to walked over and comfort him.

Wingti, however, was so embarrassed he left the Chamber.

Government passed 2017 Budget

The budget was passed 75-0.

This will be the fifth consecutive budget by the O’Neill led Government and the last budget in this term of Parliament before the national election.

The 2017 Budget is set at K12,965.4 million against a revenue envelope of K11,088.8 million.

This comprise of K9,182.2 million in tax revenue, K1,045.3 million in grants and K1,245.7 million from other sources of revenue.

However, Opposition Leader Don Polye debated and termed the 2017 budget as a scam to defraud the people of this nation.

Rural areas at risk of HIV spreading

This is one of the key findings in the 2015 Inquiry Report on the status of HIV/AIDS in Papua New Guinea.

It was revealed by West New Britain Governor and Chairman of the Special Parliamentary Committee on HIV/AIDS Advocacy, Sasindran Muthuvel, in Parliament yesterday.

“HIV/AIDS fury is far reaching and rampant in the remote rural communities while many people lack knowledge and risks of how HIV/AIDS is spreading and blamed AIDS related deaths to sorcery.

PNG is ‘games ready’ to host FIFA U20 Women’s World Cup

Minister for Sports Justin Tkatchenko revealed this today in Parliament when responding to WNB Governor Sasindran Muthuvel on the preparedness of the event.

TKatchenko said the country is ready to host the 16 international teams during the event.

He added that Venezuela and USA will be arriving in the country today and the others will follow soon.

“All the facilities are game ready and will be handed over to the FIFA organizing committee to run the competition at the end of this week.”

APEC to cost K120m

Minister for APEC and National Events Justin TKatchenko told Parliament today that the cost will not be what he mentioned earlier.

“The amount I mentioned this week is not the overall APEC budget but includes cost that are part of the normal government operations.

“Police and military will work on APEC and many of their normal cost are part of the recurrent budget expenditure.

“We will take our border protection to the next level that has been lacking for decades.”

7,000 business executives to attend APEC

Prime Minister Peter O’Neill told Parliament this afternoon.

He said the APEC Summit is a unique opportunity for the people of PNG to take advantage of business opportunities.

O’Neill added that three cruise liners will also berth at the shores of Port Moresby during the APEC Summit and will bring revenue into the country’s economy.

The Prime Minister was responding to Opposition leader Don Polye on total cost of hosting the APEC summit in 2018.