12 Mar 2019

Bougainville's Momis and Mekamui embrace

5:24 am on 12 March 2019

Bougainville's president John Momis has taken part in a unity ceremony with Mekamui separatists in the Panguna area.

John Momis (c) meets Mekamui leaders in 2016.

John Momis (c) meets Mekamui leaders in 2016. Photo: EMTV

The integration of the once militant Mekamui faction into the mainstream of politics is a priority for the Bougainville government in the autonomous Papua New Guinea region as the referendum on independence approaches.

At the ceremony Mekamui Defence Force commander, Moses Pipiro, called for all Bougainvilleans to align with the autonomous government (ABG) and support Mr Momis.

Bougainville fought a revolution against oppression so its dreams of independence could be realised, Mr Pipiro said.

Mr Momis said the ABG was ready to work with the Mekamui and to engage with them in a collaborative manner, to ensure a successful outcome of the referendum.

Get the RNZ app

for ad-free news and current affairs