17 Feb 2015

Bougainville preparing for critical election

2:04 pm on 17 February 2015

The electoral commissioner in Papua New Guinea's Bougainville says this year's election is critical for the province and he wants every eligible voter to take part.

George Manu says the electoral process is likely to begin late next month, with voting in May.

He says the next Autonomous Bougainville Government is expected to take the people through to a vote on possible independence from PNG as stipulated in the Bougainville Peace Agreement.

"It is my intention, it is our intention at the Electoral Commission to ensure that all eligible voters around Bougainville cast their votes during the election. So everyone around Bougainville has to know that this election is very important to them."

George Manu says there is already a lot of interest in contesting the poll.

Electoral advisors from Australia and New Zealand are in the province to assist the commission in its preparations for the poll.