Southern Highland’s common roll update materials missing


AN emergency meeting at the Mendi police station on Tuesday was told that 24 boxes of materials for the province’s common roll update went missing from the Southern Highlands electoral office.
The items were allegedly taken away in a raid by newly appointed provincial election manager Jacob Kurap and a group of policemen on Tuesday.
The battle over the post of Southern Highlands’ election manager is now before the court. And while awaiting the court decision, provincial administrator Joe Kaiyo wants the common role update to go ahead.
Kaiyo said the missing to common roll update forms had to be returned immediately as the province had only two weeks left complete the exercise.
“This is a public office and while awaiting court’s decision, we must go ahead with the common roll update for the good of the province,” he said.
“The provincial administration has no power to make decisions right now and we must wait for the court’s decision but we cannot let this differences affect the common roll update,” he said.
Deputy Governor James Mali appealed to Kurap and his predecessor David Wakias to step aside while awaiting the court decision and allow the deputy election manager Grace Wong to proceed with common roll update.
“We cannot wait, we are trailing behind and someone has to go ahead with the job and that is Wong.
“Let the court decide which of the two men is to be the manager and let us all stay united and support Wong with the roll update,” he said.
Wong said she was appointed the deputy election manager in 2012 and has experience and confidence to go ahead with the roll update.
She said the 24 boxes arrived in the province but some people hijacked them and they should be returned immediately.
“Those materials costs millions of kina and to reprint them would delay us further.
“They must be returned and we go ahead with the roll update for the good of everyone,” she said.

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