11 Feb 2015

Moves afoot in PNG parliament

7:18 am on 11 February 2015

Reports from Papua New Guinea say the Governor of Oro province, Garry Juffa has been told to leave government and join the opposition.

The Post Courier reports that the Leader of government business James Marape put it in writing to Mr Juffa.

Mr Juffa, who has largely occupied the middle benches since being elected in 2012, has been a critic of government policy.

The Opposition leader Don Polye says he welcomes Mr Juffa to the team as he seeks support for a motion of no-confidence against the Prime Minister Peter O'Neill.

The opposition only has around twelve MPs currently but needs ten more to be able to lodge a motion.

Mr O'Neill has enjoyed the support of a vast majority of the 111 MPs since 2012, but reports from Waigani have a number of MPs considering defecting.

These include the former Prime Minister Sir Michael Somare.

Meanwhile, the Post Courier reports that the opposition MP Belden Namah is on the verge of joining government.