O'Neill: MPs Do Not Have to Join the Government Side to be able to Serve the People of Papua New Guinea Who Elected Them.


The National - Wednesday, August 17, 2022

FORMER Prime Minister Peter O’Neill says Members of Parliament (MPs) do not have to join the government side to be able to serve the people who elected them.

“In Papua New Guinea, we have this perception that you have to be in Government to serve the people.

“That isn’t quite true,” he said.

“We (MPs) are legislators.

“To serve our people, we need strong laws and good policies and plans to (take) us forward.”

O’Neill, also the Peoples National Congress (PNC) party leader, said the PNC, the second biggest party in Parliament, would be a strong Opposition side.

“It does not necessarily mean we will oppose everything (brought by the Government) for the sake of opposing.

“We want to do what’s best for our country and people,” he said.

Kandrian-Gloucester MP Joseph Lelang has been appointed Opposition Leader.

His deputy is Kiriwina-Goodenough MP Douglas Tomuriesa.

O’Neill also congratulated the only female PNC MP Rufina Peter, who succeeded Pangu Pati member Robert Agarobe as the Governor of Central.

Meanwhile, O’Neill, who recently filed an application in the Supreme Court to interpret certain provisions of the Constitution, explained that the move was not meant to “create unnecessary issues but to correct the interpretation of the law”.

He said only the Supreme Court could decide whether the Organic Law had breached the Constitution.

“The only place that can interpret that is the Supreme Court.

“We are not here to frustrate the process of running the affairs of the country,” he added.


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