Autonomous Bougainville Government

Work in progress for ABG

President of the Autonomous Region of Bougainville (AROB) Ishmael Toroama applauded his government MPs in a recent parliament sitting. He highlighted that September 29 this year marked the first year of the Toroama-Nisira government in office. He described the first year as an eventful one.

The President said, “In the last twelve months our government has progressed our Independence Mission from a seemingly impossible concept into a reality driven by our people in our constituencies. We have mapped out an economic roadmap and the administration is well on its way to reform.”

Referendum ready program launched

The event was held at Tanei Village in the Tonsu Constituency on Sunday.

On the 18th of November 2020, the Bougainville House of Representatives passed a motion on the Bougainville Independence Mission.

This motion called upon all Bougainvilleans to make it their duty to ensure that Bougainville is prepared to attain its full sovereign powers as an independent sovereign state.

Government releases K146.7 million to Bougainville

He made the announcement at the end of a successful Joint Supervisory Body (JSB) meeting in Arawa on Friday 5th February, which he co-chaired with Bougainville President, Ishmael Toroama. 

PM Marape said such early allocation was "unprecedented" and highlighted his Government's commitment to Bougainville. 

"For us to deliver K146. 7 million early, in February, is unprecedented," he said. 

"Not too many governments of the past have done this sort of thing."

President clarifies past business dealings

Following an article in an Australian news site that pinpointed the president as a major shareholder, President Toroama clarified that his past business dealings were done as a private citizen.

“Bougainville Sustainable Timber Resources Limited was set up with the intent to bring in foreign investors to Bougainville to be involved in sustainable logging as well as alluvial gold projects,” he said in response to The Australian article.

ABG president notes steady progress

In a recent update, he outlined that the fourth House of Representatives is on track.

“During my campaign, I outlined three basic platforms that form the basis of my Presidency; these are independence, economic revitalisation and ending corruption and improving law and order,” Toroama stated.

“These platforms appealed to the average Bougainvillean because the people demanded a change from the previous political regime and so they opted for one that could provide decisive and pragmatic leadership.  

Cocoa grants applications open

The grants scheme is an initiative of the Autonomous Bougainville Government and the governments of Papua New Guinea, Australia and New Zealand, and implemented through the Bougainville Partnership’s Commodity Support Facility.

The announcement follows the completion of a first round of grants which supported 25 famers groups from 2017-2020.

Australian High Commissioner Jon Philp said the program is part of a partnership to foster agriculture and economic development in Bougainville.

“Australia is delighted to support this program’s continuation,” he said.

National reconciliation set for November

The reconciliation, which was approved at the March Joint Supervisory Body meeting, is targeted at former combatants and members of the PNG security forces including defence, police and correctional services.

Acting Chief Secretary to the Autonomous Bougainville Government, Col. Thomas Raivet (Rtd), said this reconciliation is critical and must happen before the referendum to ensure Bougainvilleans are free to vote in November.

National reconciliation ceremony deferred

Scheduled to be held on the same day as Bougainville day, the event has been moved to the first week of July.

A reconciliation ceremony between the National Government and its armed entities and the people of Bougainville and the Bougainville Revolutionary Army, planned for Saturday June 15 at Panguna, will now take place on the 2nd of July.

Minister for Bougainville Affairs, Sir Puka Temu, said the actual date will be confirmed once both the National Government and Autonomous Bougainville Government consult.

Referendum Roadshow underway

The Bougainville Referendum Roadshow is an initiative of the United Nations in conjunction with the ABG with the objective to meet with key stakeholders in the three regions of Bougainville.

The Roadshow will also give the leadership the opportunity to inform and engage with the people at the community level: this allows for information regarding the referendum, post referendum planning and related activities to be widely discussed.

This will all be underlined by the key message “Peace by peaceful means, Unity and Rule of Law”.

I will not stand down: ABG Chief Secretary

The five-point petition alleges malpractice within the ABG and calls for immediate investigations as well as sidelining of government officials, among them, President John Momis and Nobetau.

For the ABG Chief Secretary, the petition calls for an investigation into Nobetau’s alleged involvement in the awarding of citizenship to Djoko Tjandra.

The petition by services providers and ex-combatants was delivered on December 3rd alleging malpractices in the ABG, claiming there is incompetency, corruption and a system of favouritism.