PNG Confidence Motion Goes to Court

By Peni Komaisavai

Papua New Guinea’s government has asked the country’s High Court to stay the processing of a no-confident motion in Parliament, saying if it is heard, it could be in contempt of court.

The Opposition has filed a no-confidence motion against the Prime Minister, Peter O’Neill. However Justice Minister and Attorney General Alfred Manase says a related issue is already pending before the Supreme Court.

Manase has urged people to understand his role to “ensure that the rule of law is respected and observed at all times, even by parliament,” according to PNG media reports.

PNG’s government has been in a state of turmoil in recent weeks, with a number of cabinet resignations and MPs switching sides of the house.

Three government MPs—Kiriwina-Goodenough’s Douglas Tomuriesa, Talasea’s Francis Maneke and Sohe MP Henry Amuli—resigned from the ruling party, before reversing that decision and participating in a traditional reconciliation ceremony.

The trio have told local media that they were sticking with government to ensure projects benefiting their constitituencies are seen through.

Parliament is due to sit on May 28.

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