3 Sep 2019

Bougainville's Momis explains why Nobetau had to go

3:00 pm on 3 September 2019

The President of Papua New Guinea's autonomous region of Bougainville has laid out in a statement why the Chief Secretary Joseph Nobetau had to go.

Bougainville President John Momis

Bougainville President John Momis Photo: supplied

John Momis has acknowledged that the sacking last month raised a lot of concern among Bougainvilleans.

Mr Momis said the relationship between the government and Mr Nobetau had become untenable.

He says he has regularly described himself as more powerful that the president and the Bougainville executive council and would shout at and abuse ministers.

Mr Momis says the chief secretary was required to report directly to him, but he had not made contact in nine months; he rarely attended meetings where his presence was mandatory; and had undermined the autonomous government aims, allowing the Papua New Guinea government agenda to take precedence.

Mr Momis said Mr Nobetau colluded with PNG officials to deny the Minister of Bougainville Peace Agreement Implementation the opportunity to travel internationally, denying him the chance to enhance Bougainville's relationship with the global community.

He also said Mr Nobetau appeared to have participated in the leaking of key Bougainville government documents.

Mr Nobetau has called the sacking illegal and said he intends taking action.

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