By NBC News PNG | 20 December 2020.

The Member for Moresby North West Sir Mekere Morauta passed away today in Brisbane, Australia.

His wife Lady Roslyn Morauta and son James announced the passing of 74 year old Sir Mekere in a brief statement this afternoon.

They say Sir Mekere who’s been seeking medical treatment for some time in Australia died peacefully and that funeral arrangement will be advised at a later date.

Sir Mekere was born in 1946 in Kukipi Village, Malalaua District, in East Gulf.

He was the first graduate in Economics from the University of Papua New Guinea.

He became a Member of Parliament in 1997 and was Prime Minister from 1999 to 2002. From 1997 to 2012 and 2017 to 2020, he held the seat of Moresby North West.

Prior to entering politics, Sir Mekere was Secretary for Finance (1972–1982), Managing Director of the Papua New Guinea Banking Corporation (1983-1992), Governor of the Bank of Papua New Guinea (1993-1994), a company director and successful businessman.

As Prime Minister, Sir Mekere Morauta is credited with initiating significant constitutional and economic reform.

In 1999, Sir Mekere devised and led a rescue package when the economy was on the brink with government finances in disarray and a currency that was spiraling to inconvertibility. The rescue package stabilised the economy and the budget.

Key institutions of state were strengthened and important reforms were introduced to the financial sector especially in banking and superannuation and to the structure and workings of the public sector.

Constitutional changes were also introduced which brought stability to politics in Papua New Guinea and laid the foundation for the orderly development of political parties.

As Minister for Public Enterprises from 2011-2012, Sir Mekere re-set the primary focus of the Independent Public Business Corporation, concentrating on strengthening it to undertake the important job of rehabilitating the state-owned enterprises.

After retiring from politics in August 2012, Sir Mekere was appointed by the leaders of the Pacific Islands Forum as the Eminent Person to review the Pacific Plan. The report was published in 2013.

In 2012, he was also appointed Chairman of the Papua New Guinea Sustainable Development Program Company.

In 2017, he re-contested for Parliament and won the seat of Moresby North West.

NBC News

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