14 Aug 2007

PNG's PM establishes caretaker administration to work out distribution of portfolios

6:57 am on 14 August 2007

The Papua New Guinea Prime Minister, Sir Michael Somare, has set aside three weeks to decide the allocation of portfolios as he tries to meld together the huge coalition which returned him to power yesterday.

Sir Michael got more than 80 percent of the votes in Parliament with his National Alliance supported by 13 other parties.

Most of the independents elected in last months poll had already formally joined the National Alliance.

Our correspondent in Port Moresby, Alex Rheeney, says that the formula for the allocation of portfolios is one for every three seats a party has, and Sir Michael has put in place a Caretaker Government to work out who gets what.

"So over the next three weeks the coalition partners will go through the 28 Ministries that are on offer and he will distribute Ministries. And there are also Chairmanships of Parliamentary Committees that are also available that he could dish out to keep everyone happy."