15 May 2012

Sir Michael Somare changes his mind and will contest PNG election

3:22 pm on 15 May 2012

Papua New Guinea's former Prime Minister, Sir Michael Somare, says he will lead his National Alliance party to the upcoming elections.

Sir Michael previously indicated he would step down from his East Sepik seat at the elections.

He told NBC radio that he can not stand by and watch elected leaders be removed by opposing members of Parliament.

"The party has decided that I will remain its leader until the formation of a new government. While I personally would like to stand down, I had a lot of reaction against the proposal last week. I therefore, will be going to East Sepik people, to sit down with the and leaders of each one of the six districts, then make my final decision whether or not to stand again."

Sir Michael Somare says he awaits a supreme court decision re-affirming the legitimacy of his government, which was controversially removed by Peter O'Neill in August last year.