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Bougainville leaders join to back Momis for second term

Moses Pipiro endorses John Momis with traditional shell moneyANTHONY KAYBING

BOUGAINVILLE’S Mekamui Tribal Government of Unity has pledged its support to incumbent President John Momis in this year’s general elections.

Mekamui Defence Force leader Moses Pipiro declared that the people in the Panguna area were fully behind President Momis’s bid to retain the Bougainville presidency at a political rally held in Panguna.

“The Mekamui Tribal Government of Unity stands behind President Momis as we see him as the person who will lead us to freedom,” Mr Pipiro said.

“The Mekamui faction has also started the realignment process with the Autonomous Bougainville Government that will see reintegration and unity amongst all Bougainvilleans.

“President Momis has been with us from the very start of our struggle for self-determination and he is the only one who knows where will go,” he said.

Former Bougainville president James Tanis was amongst a host of leaders from north, south and central Bougainville who endorsed President Momis’s candidacy.

Mr Tanis said that his decision not to stand for election was to allow Dr Momis to complete the long journey that is Bougainville’s move to self-determination and, should the people choose, total independence.

“President Momis is on the verge of completing what he started more than 40 years ago when he took up the fight for our people’s freedom,” Mr Tanis said.

“It would be unjust for me to usurp his leadership, as a respected elder statesman he has the necessary experience and will to lead us to independence.

“With Bougainville’s referendum to be held within the term of the third House of Representatives as stipulated in the PNG Constitution, Bougainvilleans must know the type of leader they want to lead them and President Momis is that leader,” he said.

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