PNG moves up Arafura medals tally
New Eden – A poem of love for PNG

It’s official – parliament full of hot air


AFTER A CONSIDERABLE period of enforced absence, PNG’s parliament reconvened this week only to find that by Thursday morning, the acting Speaker had to adjourn the sitting yet again due to a lack of a quorum (which is 33 members).

Many government members were elsewhere, debating who might succeed PM Somare as prime minister.

The excuse given by Speaker Jeffery Nape as to why he suspended parliament months ago, was that necessary renovations were needed to parliament. But it begs the question of who or what is more important; Parliament or the prime minister.

Apparently parliament has been without air conditioning since 2007 and, although there are plans to have the unit repaired and K1 million had been allocated for the work, nothing has been done.

The Speaker, whose job it is to manage repairs to parliament, has been unable to effect this work over the months of enforced absence of MP’s due to his own inaction.

What a pity he wasn’t as competent in management as he has been in suspending his country’s Parliament?

One could perhaps observe that, thanks to Mr Nape, the PNG parliament remains be full of hot air.


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Peter Kranz

Sam Basil calls for a medical assessment of Sir Michael. Is PNG heading for a political crisis?

Basil, who became Deputy Opposition Leader on Monday, told The Weekend Australian: "The constitution says that there should be a medical report on the Prime Minister's condition -- but because of respect for the Chief, we don't want to make this a political issue if we can avoid that."

If the cabinet does not seek such a report, he said, because it is "playing politics", it would be up to the Governor-General to "do the right thing" and press for one. "We need to carry on running the country" until an election next year.

Section 142 of the constitution provides for an assessment by two doctors of a prime minister's capacity "to carry out the duties of his office".

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