Manus people cut out: O'Neill concerned about refugee facility
Before evaporating, self-styled anti-corruption group issued manifesto

Paul Barker urges strong stance on inquiry into MPs’ funding


Barker_PaulAN IMPORTANT OPPORTUNITY could be lost if an investigation into MPs who failed to submit financial returns falls by the wayside, says Paul Barker (pictured), the director of Papua New Guinea’s Institute of National Affairs.

The Registrar of Political Parties, Dr Alphonse Gelu, has referred nine members of parliament to the Ombudsman Commission for failing to submit election expenses incurred during last year’s election.

Political parties also have a poor record - from over 40 parties who participated, only 12 filed returns.

This is the first time the Registrar has taken such a step and Paul Barker hopes the Ombudsman Commission will be equally motivated to send a strong message to politicians.

“There’s clearly pressure on the independent constitutional office holders to avoid taking action against some particularly powerful leaders,” Mr Barker said.

“There’s also such a backlog of investigations and prosecutions that this could join the in-tray and maybe never get addressed for one reason or another.”

The chief ombudsman says a decision will be reached soon as to whether the case should be referred to the public prosecutor.


Feed You can follow this conversation by subscribing to the comment feed for this post.

Michael Dom

Phil, the key difference between what gets the politicians knickers-in-a-knot over Mark Davis is that, where Paul Barker is concerned, there is no money involved, i.e. INA are only a think-tank not a money-bank, like SDP.

Besides, it's palpably obvious, at the grassroots level anyway, that no bureaucrat in their right mind really listens to the INA. Otherwise we might actually be doing something to save PNG.

That brings to mind the new budget...

So were spending money we don't have and now it's a good time to talk about agriculture and tourism?

And the big question about pigs is...?

We'll see.

Phil Fitzpatrick

I wonder when Paul Barker will be kidnapped by the police, driven around Moresby and then delivered to Jacksons with a one way ticket to Cairns and nothing else.

Verify your Comment

Previewing your Comment

This is only a preview. Your comment has not yet been posted.

Your comment could not be posted. Error type:
Your comment has been saved. Comments are moderated and will not appear until approved by the author. Post another comment

The letters and numbers you entered did not match the image. Please try again.

As a final step before posting your comment, enter the letters and numbers you see in the image below. This prevents automated programs from posting comments.

Having trouble reading this image? View an alternate.


Post a comment

Comments are moderated, and will not appear until the author has approved them.

Your Information

(Name and email address are required. Email address will not be displayed with the comment.)