Don’t politicise opening of Oro operating theatre: Malabag

Opening of the Popondetta General Hospital operating theatre must not be politicised, says Health Minister Michael Malabag.

The opening was scheduled for today but in an eleventh hour decision, was postponed to happen after the 2017 National Election.

Malabag in a media statement this morning said, "the formal opening off the Popondetta General Hospital Operating Theatre has been deferred until after the upcoming National Elections.

"This is a vital healthcare facility for the people of Oro and the nation, and must not be politicised.

"It is unfortunate that uninvited politicians attempted to hijack the event and create a security problem.

"The hospital will be fully functional as of today for members of the public to use facilities and services."

Meanwhile, Opposition Leader Don Polye is also in the province following an invitation from Northern Governor and People's Movement for Change Party leader, Gary Juffa.

According to the Opposition Leader’s office, Polye will officially announce the Triumph Heritage Empowerment Party candidates for Sohe Open, George Soka and Ijivitari Open, Benson Garui.

Also two sitting parliamentarians from the province are having a war of words on the opening.

Governor Gary Juffa wants former Prime Minister Sir Michael Somare to open the facility because it is an initiative of his former government.

But Ijivitari MP David Arore said the K50 million redevelopment of the theatre was completed by the O’Neill-Dion Government, fulfilling the commitment of the Somare-led government.

Arore said credit must be given to the PNC-led government.

He will be contesting the Regional Seat held by Juffa.    

(Caption: File picture of Health Minister Michael Malabag).

Charles Yapumi