25 Feb 2012

PNG women contend reserved seats legislation got required backing

5:28 am on 25 February 2012

Campaigners for political representation by women in the Papua New Guinea parliament believe legislation to set up reserved seats for women was passed this week, despite the Speaker ruling it failed to get the necessary support.

They contend that the Speaker is wrong in his interpretation that the measure did not get the required absolute majority in the 109-member parliament.

It had the backing of 58 MPs, all but one of those in the parliament at the time.

The founder of the group, PNG Women in Politics, says they have advice that this meets the absolute majority requirement.

Dorothy Tekwie says they have asked the government's lawyers to review the process and the interpretation of the results.

"We believe they have actually passed it, so they are going to look at the legislation regarding this and also the points that we have pointed out to them on this, and they will come back. I believe they will be coming out on that one probably later today."