21 Jul 2010

PNG Opposition look into forcing an early recall of Parliament

6:41 pm on 21 July 2010

The deputy leader of the Opposition in Papua New Guinea, Bart Philemon, says he doubts the Speaker Jeffrey Nape acted constitutionally in adjourning Parliament today.

The Opposition had entered a motion for a vote of no confidence and Mr Philemon says this should have been debated before Parliament was adjourned until the 16th of November.

This move protects the administration of Sir Michael Somare for several more months despite wholesale desertions this week.

But Mr Philemon says they are investigating whether they can force an early recall, though he's not hopeful.

"From memory the only provision in Parliament for recalling Parliament outside of the normal sessions is one of national emergency only, so we need to check and I need to get advice from our people as to whether there is any other provision that provides for the majority of the members of Parliament, 55, to recall Parliament, for whatever reasons."