13 Oct 2004

PNG's Bougainville island to go to polls in April

2:31 pm on 13 October 2004

Nominations for the first election for an autonomous government on the Papua New Guinea island of Bougainville are expected to open in March with voting scheduled for mid-April.

Counting is scheduled for May.

The PNG government has set aside funds to support the electoral process, with the assistance of foreign aid donors, especially Australia and New Zealand.

It says a schedule prepared by the Electoral Commissioner takes a very practical approach, showing what needs to be done to update the electoral rolls, as well as the time, resources and the process involved in giving effect to the electoral provisions of the Bougainville constitution.

The Government says the UN Security Council has been briefed on the steps leading up to the election.