13 Mar 2006

PNG judge quashes former MP Nali's guilty verdict

4:23 pm on 13 March 2006

A Papua New Guinea supreme court judge, Justice Gibbs Salika, has quashed a guilty verdict of a former MP, Michael Nali, who had been tried by a leadership tribunal.

The decision is unprecedented and the newspaper, The National, reports the move could render the dismissal of Mr Nali as a member of parliament null and void.

That means Mr Nali could claim to have been returned to the seat of Member for Mendi.

He had been referred by the Public Prosecutor to a leadership tribunal in 2003 on seven allegations relating to alleged misuse of public funds.

Mr Nali was found guilty but Justice Salika has now quashed the tribunal decision.