Komo-Margarima MP

Exxon monitors peaceful protest

A spokesperson informed this newsroom following Komo-Margarima MP, Manasseh Makiba’s recent statement in parliament that the airport was shut down due to claims of outstanding land use compensation.

The spokesperson said ExxonMobil respects the right of individuals to protest but unlawfully preventing access to important infrastructure is not the way to constructively resolve issues. 

“We encourage everyone to work together to resolve this situation promptly and in an amicable manner. 

​Potape seeks to stay court decision

His lawyer Philip Ame filed a stay application on June 8 to ask the court to stay the National Court decision, one day after Justice Collin Makail found his election null and void.

His election as Governor by the Hela Provincial Assembly members was declared illegal by the National Court for the third time.

The urgent stay application came before the Supreme Court this morning however, Chief Justice Sir Salamo Injia said there was no urgency in the application being moved today.

He adjourned the application to next Monday at 3pm, where it will be moved.

Court hears submissions on Hela governor seat

With the issue of writs set to take place on April 20, the issue of the governor’s seat has been the subject of legal battle since the death of the later Governor Anderson Agiru on April 28, 2016.

Lawyers representing Koroba-Lake Kopiago MP, Philip Undialu and Komo-Margarima Francis Potape who was purportedly elected governor presented arguments in court before Justice Collin Makail on Monday.

He reserved his ruling to a later date after hearing submissions.

This case was filed by Undialu and is substantively asking the court to nullify Potape’s election.

Undialu seeks restraining orders against Potape

The amended notice of motion filed on Sept 19 in the Election Petition Originating Summons No.8/2016 seeks, amongst other things, an order restraining Potape from performing the functions and duties as Governor for Hela Province.

That motion briefly went before the National Court this morning but could not be heard as the defendants’ lawyers, including Potape’s lawyer, were not served the motion.

Undialu’s lawyer Justin Wohuinangu said they could not effect service of the motion on Potape’s lawyer Philip Ame.

Potape’s misappropriation re-trial to commence

The trial will commence today and run through to July 12, next week Tuesday before Justice George Manuhu.

The matter was supposed to commence on Monday this week but was deferred because Potape had a Provincial Assembly meet in Hela on Tuesday.

The re-trial was ordered after the Supreme Court on July 31 last year quashed Potape's conviction and sentence after a successful appeal.