44 political parties is a problem: Dr Yala

It becomes a problem if too many political parties are contesting for elections, says the National Research Institute (NRI).

“It’s a democracy so anybody can put out their views but at the end of the day, if you read through some of the political parties’ policies, they all seem to say the same thing, and I tend to wonder what is the real reason for having 44 political parties,” NRI director Dr Charles Yala said.

Papua New Guinea has 44 political parties registered with Political Parties and Candidates Commission to contest in the 2017 National Elections, for the 111 Parliament seats.    

Dr Yala agreed that the high number of parties makes it hard for voters to differentiate political party policies.

He made reference to more developed nations who have few parties and voters can distinguish party ideologies.

“We cannot suppress individual rights on the freedom of association, which is one of our basic tenants of our democracy.  

“But everybody is selling fruit salad. We can’t know if they are telling us apple is better, or orange is better because they are putting all in one bowl and giving us,” Dr Yala said.

(NRI director Dr Charles Yala)  

Charles Yapumi