3 Sep 2007

Me'ekamui rebels and Bougainville government sign an accord to work together

7:34 pm on 3 September 2007

Rebels based around the derelict Panguna copper mine have agreed to work with the government in the autonomous Papua New Guinea province of Bougainville to restore services, destroy illegal weapons and assess a return to mining.

A faction of the pro-independence Meekamui movement at Panguna signed an agreement with the Bougainville President Joseph Kabui last Thursday.

Under the new Panguna Communique, the people of the area will form their own district administration.

The secretary of the Meekamui Government of Unity, Robin Tekapu, has told the Post-Courier newspaper his people had decided to sign the communique because no government services were reaching his people and they were suffering.

He says the ABG will be able to bring basic services like education and health services into the area.

And Mr Tekapu says they have also decided to work with the ABG because they saw both groups are aiming for the political independence of Bougainville.