Court tells lawyers to sort out who is representing EC

National

The legal representation of the Electoral Commissioner in court has delayed the proceedings of election petition matters.
The Court of Disputed Returns, presided by Justice Collin Makail, said this after a lawyer from a private firm and a lawyer under instruction from the Attorney-General appeared in court yesterday – both claiming to represent
Electoral Commissioner Patilias Gamato.
Justice Makail told the lawyers that they had to sit down and discuss the matter with Gamato because it had been affecting court proceedings concerning election petitions.
The issue of legal representation started last week when two private lawyers and a lawyer from the Solicitor-General’s Office appeared in court representing the Electoral Commission on election petition matters.
Justice Makail warned the lawyers that if it continued, he would refer them to the Papua New Guinea Law Society for unethical conduct in court.
He said the issue could not continue and “it’s embarrassing” for the court.
Justice Makail told the lawyers that it was an administrative matter and court would not tolerate or make a decision on it.
He said the Electoral Commission was an independent institution and Gamato should clarify the legal representation in court.

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