8 Jul 2004

PNG Government denies Opposition another chance to table vote of no confidence motion

9:27 pm on 8 July 2004

The Papua New Guinea Parliament was in disarray on Thursday after Opposition MPs were outmanoeuvred in their efforts to table a motion for a vote of no confidence in the Government of Sir Michael Somare .

They wanted to present it directly to Parliament after wednesday's rejection by the Government dominated Private Business Committee.

Our correspondent Peter Niesi reports the Government managed to deny the Opposition any chance of presenting the motion until time for private business was up.

"The Speaker of Parliament, who is a National Alliance member, - the Party of Prime Minister Somare - was accused of not noticing Western Highlands Governor and former Prime Minister Paias Wingti who was attemptng to table the motion directly on the floor. It resulted in heated exchanges involving Mr Wingti, the NCDC member Bill Skate and the Opposition leader Peter O'Neill, with Government MPs having a go at the Opposition, through the Speakers chair and directly across the floor"

Peter Niesi. He says Bill Skate has vowed that the Opposition will try to present the motion on today.