PM clarifies parliament’s stance on LGBTQ rights

Prime Minister, James Marape on the floor of the parliament today spoke about the concerns on the ‘Lesbian, Gay, Bi-sexual, Transgender and Queer’ (LGBTQ) flag that was raised and flown at the American Embassy in Port Moresby.

According to the Census Bureau, LGBT Pride Month is in the month of June, therefore was raised to show the embassy’s support to the LGBT Community.

Vice Minister for Constitutional Matters, Muguwa Dilu, asked PM Marape to clarify what Papua New Guinea and its people stance are in the LGBTQ space.

“PNG is a Christian country, our constitution is based on Christian Principles and Values. Just recently we saw a flag flown at the American Embassy, the ‘LGBT’ Flag. My question is can the Prime Minister clarify to this house and nation on what is the position of the country because these are looming problems facing our society at this point of time,” said Dilu.

Marape explained, as he had done in a media statement released on Thursday June 8, that the rainbow colored flag was raised as a show of the the US Embassy’s recognition of LGBTQ Pride Month.

“The embassy whether it’s American or any other missions land in our country by convention are territories that belong to those nations. And so USA Embassy if they are flying a flag that is perceived as inappropriate in our country, they however have the discretion to do what they want to do in their territory and space. But I did release a public statement out already that we will write to the US Embassy and any missions in our country to ensure that they operate within décor and in respect to our culture and to our Christian beliefs and anything contrary to our culture and our Christian practice and beliefs must be respected,” said the Prime Minister.

“Let it be stated clearly and precisely that there is no bill or law before us that will promote or secure this mindset in our country. God has created all of us equally having respect this everybody has their own freedom of choice. Our country has sufficient law already to protect human rights.”

While he acknowledged that that there are members of the LGBT community in the country, there is no bill before Parliament to legitimise LGBTQ rights nor will the PNG parliament pass any legislation on this any time soon.