​East Sepik Regional to be hotly contested

The Papua New Guinea’s first prime minister bowed out of politics at the end of the 9th Parliament term, after consecutive 49 years mandated by the East Sepik people.

National Alliance endorsed candidate, Allan Bird, is the talk in the province, with a favourite tag to replace NA party founder, Sir Michael.

Race on in Gulf

Another 47 candidates have been nominated to contest for Kikori Open electorate and 50 candidates have been nominated to contest for the Kerema open electorate.

This brings the number of candidates nominated up to 144 in total.

Candidate box numbers were drawn at the Kerema Town Basketball court yesterday which saw candidates present pick up their box numbers.

An updated list of all the candidates will be released soon with the names of candidates and their designated box numbers.

Candidates fail to provide party endorsement form at nomination

Waisa said out of 17 candidates who have so far nominated, most of them sponsored by political parties say they have provided their forms to the electoral office at Waigani.

He said these candidates will be allowed to contest the election but will be regarded as independent candidates.  

The returning officer also revealed that there has been an increase of female candidates intending to contest the 2017 National Elections compared to the 2012 elections.

In 2012, Rigo Open had only about three female candidates that contested.

17 candidates nominate so far for Rigo Open

As of 2pm today, April 26, 17 candidates including three females have nominated.

Among the 17 candidates are sitting Member of Parliament Ano Pala and the three females are Vavine Kila Nades, Iga Kepi Gima and Julianne Leka-Maliaki.

Rigo Open returning officer Virgil Waisa confirmed that before the issue of writs, they had 41 intending candidates express interest by filling in the bio data form. 

He said nominations started at a slow pace since issue of writs on April 20 and is expecting to pick up with a lot more last minute nominations on the last day.   

Show that you are true leaders, candidates told

Lae metropolitan commander, Chief Superintendent Anthony Wagambie Jr, has urged them to be mature and to campaign without resorting to bribery.

“Voters and campaign managers are not to give sweet talks and encourage candidates to spend carelessly to entice voters,” said the police boss.

“Candidates and those that campaign must stand firm and campaign fairly as true and honest leaders.”

Wagambie stressed that police personnel will be out in numbers to ensure that the elections are conducted within stated boundaries.

Lae police warn candidates

Metropolitan Commander, Chief Superintendent Anthony Wagambie Jr: "I want all the intending candidates and their supporters to conduct their campaign according to the laws of the elections.

"We will be out in full force to make sure these laws are observed and adhered to.”

Wagambie Jr stated that if they are in a convoy, they must sit inside their vehicles and not stand up.

He said they know those candidates are leaders in their own rights and would observe these rules but in case some accidentally step out of line or cause nuisance.

Truck loads convoy for nominations for Rigo Open

Since the opening of nominations, three nominated yesterday; the first being a female; Vavine Kila Nades from Kamili Village with two male independent candidates; Naga Gamoga Agarobe from Gabagaba and Lekwa Gure from Babaka.

This afternoon at 1:32pm, another independent candidate,  Richard Faroba, originally from Southern Highlands married to a local from the inland LLG of Rigo entered the Rigo district office to pay his nomination fee.

THE Party convention underway

Supporters of Parliamentary Leader Don Polye have packed the Granville conference room to officially begin their campaign for the 2017 National Elections.

Polye and his Deputy Parliamentary Leader and Kikori MP, Mark Maipakai, are present at the convention, accompanied by party executives.

It is during the convention that Polye will deliver the party's policies as well as finalise its candidates’ numbers for the elections.

The convention will be held over the next two days.

Candidates' box numbers, photos printed separately

PNGEC Media Officer Alphonse Muapi made this clarification after posts on social media questioning why ballot papers for the 2017 National Election had been printed without candidates not yet confirmed.

The nomination for intending candidates for the 111 seats in Parliament will open after the Issue of Writs by the Governor-General in nine days’ time.      

“Candidate posters are generated and produced separately, and contain candidate photos, their names and code numbers  are allocated after the order of draw at the close of nominations,” Muapi told Loop PNG.

Over 4000 candidates to contest: EC

The Issue of Writs will be on April 20, followed by candidates’ nomination, campaign and election period in June.  

Electoral Commissioner Patilias Gamato revealed that a total of 4068 intending candidates had filled and submitted the candidate bio-data form (Form 29).

According to statistics released by the PNG Electoral Commission, the Highlands Region registered the highest number of intending candidates with a progressive total of 1719.

Followed by Momase with 1017, Southern with 998 and New Guinea Islands with only 334.