Kobol seeks review in Supreme Court

The petition that sparked the June 14 mayhem in Mendi has gone before the Supreme Court.

Petitioner in the Southern Highlands Regional seat, Joseph Kobol, went before the Supreme Court with an application seeking leave to file for review.  

A ruling will be given at a later date.

Justice Derek Hartshorn, sitting as a single Supreme Court judge, today heard submission from lawyers representing Kobol, the Electoral Commission and Governor William Powi.

Kobol is asking the Supreme Court to grant him leave to file a review into the dismissal of his petition in the National Court on June 14 after it was found to be incompetent.

He put nine grounds before his leave application in the Supreme Court. Governor Powi and the Electoral Commission challenged his application.

Electoral Commission’s lawyer submitted all the grounds in Kobol’s application are without merit and do not raise points of law and should be dismissed.

Kobol’s lawyer, Philip Waraniki, put to the high court that the Southern Highlands Regional election is the first of its kind in PNG where a declaration was made without completion of the elimination process.

Kobol’s petition in the National Court asked the court to nullify Powi’s election, and order for the completion of elimination so that the candidate who reaches absolute majority can be declared.

The petition was dismissed before trial because the court found the reliefs he was asking for were not relied on under the correct provision of the Organic Law. 

Justice Hartshorn will give his ruling of Kobol’s leave application at a later date.

Sally Pokiton