by PNG Echo
Papua New Guinea’s political opposition has just two weeks to oust the Prime Minister if they want to get their hands on the government cheque book before the next election – and they do – desperately.
They’re pulling out all the stops.
As I write, there should be a decision being handed down by the Supreme Court as to the recalling of parliament to allow a motion of ‘No Confidence’ to go ahead. With the three judges sitting on the case being Mikail J, Salika DCJ and Injia CJ, I don’t like the chances of the government winning this.
The opposition are likely to get their chance at a Vote of No Confidence – whether they win it, is another matter entirely.
But they’re in there trying!
Bring out the big guns
They’ve got former Prime Ministers Sir Mekere Morauta and Sir Michael Somare joining forces in the attempt to depose the Prime Minister and asking other MPs to join them in a press statement that is the most hypocritical and self- serving document imaginable.
These men live in a very fragile metaphoric ‘glass houses’, yet they insist on throwing stones.
The two masters of the ironic (Morauta and Somare) are saying:
As former Prime Ministers we have made our choice, and we ask our fellow Papua New Guineans to join us in rescuing our country. We cannot, through inaction, see our democracy and the institutions that support democracy ruined. The nation’s future is at stake. Today we are declaring that the Prime Minister must stand down, for the good of all Papua New Guineans.”
For the good of all Papua New Guineans? When did these two have the good of Papua New Guinea foremost on their agenda?
Sir Michael was the architect and founding father of what Wikileaks called “a dysfunctional blob” and when Wikileaks made a comment on the possibility of Sir Michael coming back into power after the 2011 political coup, they referred to the Somare regime as
…a cesspit of corruption, incompetence and mediocrity.
Then again, Sir Mekere Morauta presided over what the Prime Minister has described as “the lost decade” with opportunities and good times squandered.
They are proposing a rescue plan that, on scrutiny, is actually a plan to make a plan. – they provide no solutions but plenty of criticism – all wreaking of gross hypocrisy.
The past five years of Mr O’Neill’s leadership have been characterized by mismanagement, waste and corruption on an unprecedented scale.
That’s not right.
If we’re talking mismanagement there are plenty of precedents in the Prime Ministership of both Somare and Morauta. In fact, let’s hear from Sir Mekere on what he thought about the management of PNGs finances during the Somare era,
As Minister, Arthur Somare regarded the SOEs [state–owned enterprises] as toys to be owned to glorify his image.
He said that the Somare family regarded these SOEs as their “honey pot”
It’s an interesting criticism when you consider the similar one the Prime Minister made of Sir Mekere when he recently said that that the
“…ongoing stream of hate and malice is all about the former Prime Minister trying to undermine the Government to keep control of the Sustainable Development Program (SDP) money…[Morauta] thinks that if there is a change of Government he might get to stay on and keep spending the money belonging to SDP [Sustained Development Program associated with compensation for the OkTedi mining environmental damage].”
As for corruption, well the ‘Father of the Nation’ is still allegedly at it (see here) and it would be more important to him than ever, now that he’s announced his retirement, that he install a government that would be sympathetic to his, and his family’s, ongoing needs.
No, neither of these two has earned the right to access the public coffers -especially not prior to an election that would recognise either of them as the mandated incumbent – and that’s unlikely to happen ever again making them no different to thieves, taking what doesn’t belong to them.
The question has to be asked why the opposition so desperately need access to the state’s coffers, doesn’t it? What plans do they have for money belonging to the people?
These two weeks are so crucial to the Opposition because if they depose O’Neill after this small window of opportunity, then it will trigger an election – and they will have to go to that election without the benefit of the public purse.
Make no mistake, these next two weeks are nothing to do with the good of the nation and everything to do with the financial ambitions of the Opposition who’d like the trough for their snouts.
They’ll be quiet come the end of July – mark my words. The good of the nation will be forgotten.
Hold on PNG – get the election you deserve.