Papua New Guinea PM refutes citizenship claim in court

4:55 pm on 24 May 2019

Papua New Guinea's prime minister Peter O'Neill has declared in court that he is not an Australian citizen and never has been.

Papua New Guinea prime minister Peter O'Neill announcing new development projects in Madang 13 February 2019

Papua New Guinea prime minister Peter O'Neill announcing new development projects in Madang 13 February 2019 Photo: Loop PNG

He also declared that he does not hold an Australian passport.

The court declaration follows media claims by PNG opposition MP Bryan Kramer that Peter O'Neill has dual citizenship.

Under PNG law, dual citizens are disqualified from holding public office.

In court, Mr O'Neill's lawyers presented a copy of his PNG Passport.

His current Australian visa was also presented, as his lawyers asserted that Australia never issues visas to its own citizens.

The prime minister's lawyers also applied for an order restraining Mr Kramer from defaming him either in person or in writing.

He said that Mr Kramer's statement that Mr O'Neill holds an Australian passport and is illegally occupying office is false.

Earlier this week, the Madang MP indicated he would divulge evidence on his claim next week in court or parliament.

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