18 May 2012

PNG's Tekwie pressured to quit electoral race

10:29 am on 18 May 2012

The Papua New Guinea Green Party candidate for the Vanimo electorate says she's been pressured not to run in this year's election by associates of a rival candidate, Belden Namah.

Dorothy Tekwie says she cannot submit to such pressure because the consequences of letting the Deputy Prime Minister win a seat again would be disastrous not just for Vanimo but the country as well.

Ms Tekwie accuses Mr Namah of abusing his power as an MP for personal gain.

She says she's been offered six-figure sums to not run in the elections, which she has refused.

"I've also been threatened at times and intimidated by certain people that are associated with him. I'm not going to step down because people ask me not to, because I've seen what is happening with my people in the inland where he comes from. People virtually have nothing. Women have one skirt for the whole year and nothing else while money that comes from their forest is being squandered to pay for political survival of certain people."