11 Apr 2012

PNG PM reiterates position on elections

9:23 pm on 11 April 2012

Papua New Guinea's Prime Minister Peter O'Neill has reiterated his position on the timetable for the 2012 General Elections, that the nation must go to the polls as originally scheduled.

This follows comments by Speaker Jeffery Nape in Parliament, that last week's motion by Parliament to defer the election for six months, unless rescinded, stands.

Mr O'Neill was among the 63 MPs who voted for the deferral.

However a statement from his office says the Prime Minister's position is clear that the original schedule, as announced by the Electoral Commissioner Andrew Trawen, for polling to begin late June, must be adhered to.

The statement says the National Executive Council has accepted the advice and legal position that the Parliament motion last week may be void and of no effect.

The Prime Minister commends the decision of the Electoral Commissioner to defer the issue of writs by three weeks to complete the update of the Common Roll in the Highlands.