Court refuses bid to bar Turi from venues

National

THE Waigani National Court has refused to grant interim orders sought by Port Moresby North-East MP Labi Amaiu to restrain NCD metropolitan superintendent Benjamin Turi from entering electorate’s counting venue.
Justice Colin Makail, ruled that the evidence provided to support Amaiu’s application for interim restraining orders were insufficient and based on assumptions.
Amaiu’s lawyer Daryl Kamen appeared before the court yesterday and moved the application seeking orders to restrain Turi from intimidating and harassing scrutineers, controlling  election officials and restrain him from entering the counting venue.
Kamen said it was because Turi’s actions during the polling on June 30, including a statement he made at the counting venue at Rita Flynn Court, indicated that he had pre-determined who would win the election in the electorate. Kamen said on the polling day, Turi went to a venue at Bush Wara and stopped the polling.
He said Turi had no powers to do so.
He said on the same day at about 2pm, Turi went to another polling area at Unagi Oval, and allegedly assaulted a scrutineer and stopped the polling while there were some eligible voters standing in line.
Kamen submitted that prior to the counting at Rita Flynn Court, Turi openly made a statement that he would make sure Amaiu and a candidate for the NCD regional seat would not go into power.
Kamen submitted that because of Turi’s conduct, he was compromising his position and there was fear that he might interfere with the counting.
Turi’s lawyer Irene Mugugia objected to the application, saying there was no utility for the orders sought because the counting had started and was expected to end over the weekend.
Mugugia said the evidence provided in support of the application were based on assumptions because there was no evidence to show that Turi had interfered with the counting.
The court refused to grant the interim restraining orders and ordered that Amaiu pay for the cost of the application.

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