Women's advocate backs current Bougainville President

6:18 am on 25 May 2020

If Bougainville President John Momis can run in this year's election long time women's advocate Helen Hakena will be delighted.

Helen Hakena.

Helen Hakena. Photo: Wikimedia Commons

Mr Momis has been seeking a reference from the Papua New Guinea Supreme Court on the legitimacy of a decision by the Bougainville parliament which rejected a push to allow presidents more than two terms in the role.

Mr Momis has been president of Bougainville for the past 10 years.

Some in the region say that's enough but Ms Hakena said it's vital he stayed as, "over the years he was the leader that the people knew and trusted, and he has worked tirelessly to bring Bougainville to where it is today."

"Mr Momis was a very intelligent, very decisive leader and at the same time very humble," she said.

Ms Hakena acknowledged there were people who thought he had been in the role long enough but she said he had a lot of supporters who still believed in his leadership.

"I am one of them."

The Bougainville election is set for August with the writs to be issued on 17 June.

Nominations will not open until after that date but there is already a large number of people lining up to contest for the presidency.

Mr Momis said early last week that he hoped the decision by the Supreme Court was days away.

Bougainville President John Momis

Bougainville President John Momis Photo: supplied