The best & the worst: Election creates new bedmates
Struggling between two cultures

MPs of the new parliament: Gulf & Jiwaka Provinces


The information in this series is derived from public sources and, in some cases, may not be accurate. We invite readers to offer corrections and additional material by contacting the editor here.


Havila KavoHavila Kavo (Gulf, People’s National Congress) retains his seat and governor’s role. He was first elected governor in 2007 but the  appointment was rescinded in June 2010, following a vote of no-confidence by the Gulf Provincial Assembly. Kavo successfully challenged this decision and was reinstated following a ruling by the Supreme Court the following August. Then, in April last year, Kavo was arrested and charged for the misappropriation of over K131,000 in public funds from the Gulf administration between January and February 2010. Earlier this year stated that said companies which discredited Papua New Guinea by calling it a failed state should be banned from the country. “Ten years ago, Shell described PNG as a failed state, gave up its operations, sold it to InterOil and left. Now they have decided to come back,” he said.

Richard Mendani (Kerema, PNG Country Party) was managing director at Oceania Klasic management consulting having previously worked for the Pacific Islands Forum Secretariat. Mendani, 45, also has other business interests.

Maipakai_MarkMark Maipakai (Kikori, Triumph Heritage Empowerment Party), former Labour and Industrial Relations Minister, is now in his third term. In March this year he was suspended from parliament suspended pending an investigation into allegations of misappropriation of public funds. Community leaders complained that during Maipakai’s previous two parliamentary terms there were no improvements in Kikori’s roads, health services, police, or water utilities. "Maipakai’s suspension is welcomed,” said a local chief. But the incident did not hamper his re-election.


William TongampDr William Tongamp (Jiwaka, New Generation Party) has been elected as the inaugural governor of Jiwaka Province in a surprise result where he defeated former health minister jamie Maxtone-Graham (PNG Party). Tongamp is an associate professor in the faculty of engineering of Akita University in Japan. He said Jiwaka could be like Japan if educated people of the province went back and contributed ideas to develop it. Tongamp said PNG had many politicians but no leaders who could see and understand things of the past and prepare it for the future.

Komun Joe Koim (Angalimp-South Waghi, Independent), whose campaign was launched by Belden Namah, fills the vacancy created by former MP Jamie Maxtone-Graham choosing to contest the Jiwaka Provincial seat.

Mai Dop (Jimi, United Resources Party) a local businessman defeated the minister assisting prime minister on constitutional matters, Wake Goi, amongst vehement complaints in the electorate that their elected member was letting them down. In late May a man died and two were seriously wounded after Dop and another candidate, Clement Kupul, attacked each other during nomination formalities. Dop confirmed the incident but said he had already left when the fight broke out. “I told my supporters that I wanted peaceful and fair elections and then left for Kwiop when the fight started,” he said.

Fabian PokDr Fabian Pok (North Waghi, United Resources Party) returns to parliament after defeating sitting MP Benjamin Mul, an independent, arrested for allegedly handing out funds and in possession of a bag containing over K4,500 and seven guns. Pok 47, attended Keravat National High School, studied commerce at UPNG and in 1990 graduated with a masters degree in economics from the University of New England. He then went on to complete a PhD. Returning to PNG he lectured at UPNG and consulted to various government departments and businesses. He was in parliament from 1997-2002. Pok is the author of three books and has written many papers on accounting issues in developing countries.


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Andrew Dupre

Jiwaka Province has seen very little tangible development since it broke away from Western Highlands in 2012.

The province was governed by Dr William Tongamp for 10 years and the reins have now been taken by businessman Simon Kaiwai.

Tongamp established Kurumul as the Jiwaka headquarters but Kaiwi has now shifted it to Minj.

The province is yet to see a physical headquarters building as well as tangible developments that will lift the livelihoods of the 400,000 plus people.

Many people live below the poverty line and are unreached by roads.

Steve Opur

Hello to all my Jiwakan folks, i've read almost exclusive complaints and grievances on facebook regarding the the inattention of our politicians on the people about tangiable benefits on the ground especially from Jimi electorate and Jiwaka Provincial government.

The way people are airing their concerns seemed to be basing on opacity and misused of public funds resulting in poor condition of the state establishments, basic government services to people in both rural and urban centres,lack of planning for impact projects and implementation domain, too much unnecessary politics within the group of people of political rivalries that do not have any single benefit on the beneficiaries of the province. the government and the people who elected as political heads of the districts and province are running them as private entity.

lets not decide and plan for fewer peple who are closer to the current political regime to benefit with the bulk of the population left out. this type of leadership and political approach is unhealthy for a successful society. we must learn to plan for realist and tangiable benefits to the people despite political differences or put aside political differences and work together with all people to realise the true benefits. this attitude will only promote peace and harmony in the community throught out the land mass of jiwaka province and helping human stability and solidarity.

Steve Opur

I was happy when the Jiwakans decided to elect such highly educated personnel as Dr William Tongamp as Jiwaka Governor and Dr Fabian Pok as North Wahgi MP to represent Jiwaka people in the National Parliament.

When we talk about true leaders, they are symbolising tools of changes and soul of redeeming confused citizens and this is all about the development.

Infrastructure and human development in the province is far most important than lining up all the political cronies in the provincial office.

My appeal is that Jiwaka must be serious about infrastructure and human development rather than anything else.

Send more Jiwakans to tertiary institutions, if the parents cannot meet the school fees, the Jiwaka provincial government must step in to pay tuition and other fees.

There needs to be more capacity building and the promotion of more basic services to the locals to empower them to be the flying colours of this nation.

These will put Jiwaka in a better position to develop and grow strong without hiccups.

Hope my good and finest politicians can deliver.

Korki Mian

Thumbs up for Komin Joe Koim, MP of Anglimp South Waghi Electorate. He is a true leader because he is doing his job right now.

As I come from a remote area in Minj so calles Tsigmil (Tukoi), he is upgrading our main road leading to Kup Gamar from Minj.
Thank you very much MP Komun Joe Koim.

David T Pundi

Good to see all our MPs - especially Jiwakans - are online for comment. I write to bring into consideration the electorate where I come from, South Wahgi Anglimp.

The Governor's and our open members should consider the break-up of the electorate before the Boundary Commission comes in for breaking up Jiwaka.

Anglimp South Wahgi is first because nature and truth itself shows the data.

Come on guys, mobilise. Do what you can do before the 2017 election.

Mathew Meteks

Asians doing business in Jiwaka will be chased out as soon as possible now.

Kai Boma

Jiwaka has come "out of madness" to elect this young leader in Dr William Tongamp.

The Health Minister really could not show up in the electorate even once in the last seven years he had served as an MP. This is true whether you believe it or not!

The Associate Professor should make it his business to be in Jiwaka at all times to serve his people and walk around to buy market goods from local enterpruners. He does not need police escort.

Nito Mere

Our MPS for Gulf must work together and develop Gulf Province.

We are going backwards and the current members are not providing services to the local commiunity. They always talk about big projects but the people who voted for them are suffering.

There are no air service in Kikori, Baimuru and Ihu. And no sea transport operations. Nothing at all.

Our Kikori MP has had three terms in parliment but nothing has been done in his three districts.

John Wali

Hey Keith - The photo you have for Mark Maipakai is actually Sam Abla's photo - former member for Wabag Open.

Joe Wasia

Correction-former MP Sam Abal's image is inserted in Mark Mapakai's profile. Thanks

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