22 Dec 2011

PNG politician says PM O'Neill using tactics of dictator or despot

7:44 pm on 22 December 2011

Supporters of Papua New Guinea's Sir Michael Somare are refusing to acknowledge that the rival Peter O'Neill group has won control of the government.

After a week of political turmoil resulting from Mr O'Neill refusing to accept a court ruling restoring Sir Michael to the prime ministership, it became clear that he had the backing of all the state institutions.

Mr O'Neill facilitated this through a series of legislative amendments, made easier by the Somare minority mostly boycotting Parliament.

But the governor of Southern Highlands Province, Anderson Agiru, says the O'Neill administration is illegal.

He says it undertakes reckless and dangerous attacks on constitutional institutions and carries out paranoid political vendettas.

He says to cling to power it's engaged in dangerous attacks on the independence of many institutions enshrined by the constitution.

Mr Agiru says these are the tactics of dictators and despots.