Registrar of the Political Parties and Candidates Commission, Dr Alphonse Gelu, informed Loop PNG that he has advised against the registering of the association as a political party as it doe not conform to a unity principle that the commission wants parties to promote.
“Any political party that comes in to register one of the important things we ask them to do is to promote, is that they are here to promote unity. They are not here to promote disintegration in our country. That is not what we want to do.”
The Mataungan Association is a pre-independent secessionist movement that wanted to break away from New Guinea and become an independent state.
The history of the association is very much inline with the history of Papua New Guinea.
“We cannot talk about the history of Papua New Guinea without making reference to the Matangaun Association, (because) it played a very important role in fighting for independence for Papua New Guinea.
“Someone in Rabaul asked me if it is okay for us to register Mataungan Association as a political party, and I advised to that particular person that no I will not, because Mataungan Association is a specific association that represents a specific interest of a specific group of people or a specific locality in the country therefore I cannot register them as a political party,” Gelu said.
Meanwhile, Gelu has called on all political parties to have representation around the country and not just in Port Moresby.
He said there were instances currently where most of these political parties are Port Moresby based.
“So if they are Port Moresby based parties, whose interest are they representing?” So that’s one of the things that I have been trying to discourage people who come up with ideas that we want to form a political party.