Call for MPs to make ‘conscientious decision’


THE Catholic Bishops Conference (CBC) of PNG and the Solomon Islands has called on MPs to make a “very conscientious decision” and form a good government that will serve the interest of the people and the country.
With the first session of the 10th Parliament convening today, following an invitation by Governor-General Sir Bob Dadae to the People’s National Congress (PNC) to form government, conference general secretary Fr Victor Roche told a media conference in Port Moresby yesterday that MPs should base their decision on people’s interest and welfare.
“I can only say, thank God it’s over.  It is very crucial that we have a good government in place to reflect and evaluate the elections and those irregularities that had happened,” Roche said.
He said the Catholic Bishops Conference as an independent body was of the view that the 2017 general election was a failed election.
“Let us get a good government in place and that’s the very important task that is ahead of our elected members of parliament,” he said.
“The members of the Commonwealth Observer Group have noted that many legal voters were unable to vote because their names were not in the electoral roll.
“They also observed that there were many incidences of vote-buying from the part of the candidates.
“Almost 60 to 70 per cent of the people didn’t vote.
“During the counting, some of the centres could not continue and went on strike due to non-payment of allowances for polling officers.
“After the results were announced, there were a few killings and destruction of property in election related incidences in different parts of the country.
“One airport was closed for a few days by supporters of rival candidates.
“So based on many observation throughout the conduct of the 2017 national election, many of us are of the view that the election has actually failed.”

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