Autonomous Region of Bougainville

Arawa polling delayed, voters turned away

Voters assembled at the Marimari Haus Lotu polling venue early this morning only to be turned away by the polling team.

The team of five polling officers and one police officer arrived to find out that the electoral roll is yet to be printed by the electoral office in Bougainville.

The polling team says three polling venues in Ward five, North Nasioi, are yet to receive the electoral rolls as the electoral office in Bougainville has not printed enough.

​Five women vie for B’ville seats

The five women are contesting the three open seats while the regional seat is being vied for by nine men.

In Central Bougainville, two women, running as independents, are pitted against 19 men.  They are Gloria Terikian and Lynette Ona.

Another two are going up against 29 men for the North Bougainville seat. Rachel Konaka is running as an independent while Elizabeth Burain is contesting under the People’s Progress Party (PPP) banner.

​New Bougainville school launched

The partnership is between the Autonomous Bougainville Government Education Department, the Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade and Digicel PNG Foundation.

Beneficiaries included: Kepesia Primary School, Sipuru Primary School, Kavaranou Primary School, Mungkala PS  and Kekesu Primary School, impacting directly 400 students in this academic year alone.

NRI commences research into Bougainville Referendum

The Bougainville Referendum is an important national event with significant implications for both PNG and the Autonomous Region of Bougainville (ABG).

The Referendum will determine whether ABG will gain independence or remain autonomous.

The aim of the project, launched today, is to generate research-based information for informing relevant stakeholders in order to ensure that the process and outcome of the Referendum is credible.

Elections important for Bougainville

This is from an independent observation from an ex-combatant Ben Kamda, the former Rebel operations planner during the Crisis.

“Right now the election fever is so high and Bougainvilleans will be very careful in choosing candidates,” Kamda said.

“They will mostly be choosing candidates that are serious about Bougainville’s cause and the region’s political future.

Information Centres in Bougainville

This will allow people to access key issues such as the Bougainville Peace Agreement and the upcoming referendum.

Supported by the United Nations Development Programme’s (UNDP) Peacebuilding Fund, the Community Information Center will serve as a “one-stop shop” where visitors can learn about the work of the ABG and the national government on the Referendum and implementation of the Bougainville Peace Agreement.

Weapons disposal program needed in Bougainville

Chairman of the Parliamentary Committee on the Bougainville Referendum and Southern Highlands Governor, William Powi, said this today following a recent trip to the island.

Powi said both issues were key milestone activities that needed to be addressed before the referendum, which was a significant and historic moment for them, could take place.

He stated firstly that there was a lot of misconception about the referendum and a major awareness drive was needed to inform everyone in Bougainville.

A challenge to Bougainville returning officials

The acting Electoral Commissioner for the Autonomous Region of Bougainville, George Manu, made the statement when addressing election officials during their enrolment training workshop in Buka last Tuesday.

He urged the officials to be mindful of their behaviour and attitudes when performing their electoral duties.

“We do not want to repeat similar mistakes committed by ROs (returning officers) and AROs (assistant ROs) engaged during the past national election and ABG elections in Bougainville,” Manu said.

Confusion reigns over Remembrance Day holiday in AROB

This major confusion silently went unnoticed. It was also in breach of the Public Service Standing Orders of Papua New Guinea.

Remembrance Day fell on Saturday, July 23, according to the Standing Orders. There shouldn’t be any break on Monday unless a public holiday falls on a Sunday. Like Easter Sunday, the holiday is on a Monday.

SI Government plans Bougainville and PNG reconciliation

Solomon Islands Prime Minister Manasseh Damukana Sogavare told LOOP PNG resolving past differences is the only path to true peace and security in the border regions.

“We have the Bougainvilleans also here, they come as observers, and we look at how we can do peace building on the border between PNG and Solomon Islands a bit better and in a way that can promote and harness peace among our people,” Sogavare said.

Bougainville civil war, the largest conflict in Oceania since WWII, raged for a decade from 1988, with thousands of lives lost.