Do quality checks on candidates

National, Normal

The National, Monday February 24th, 2014

 A CABINET minister has suggested in parliament that requirements for people planning to run for public office must be reviewed.

Police Minister and Madang MP Nixon Duban said last Friday there must be quality checks done on who should run for public office. 

Duban, who had just won a by-election on his seat, said he was offended by the process that he and others had to go through in the court of disputed returns.

“We’re seeing too many opportunists running in the race to become a MP and not genuinely trying to represent the public,” he said. 

“We need to raise the requirement of public office. There must be quality checks on who should contest.

“Residential qualifications must stretch to more than six months. We must see that you are a permanent resident and that you have a tribe and can speak the local language.”

Duban said there should be scrutiny on the financial and health status of candidates before being allowed to contest.  

He said the Electoral Commission should allow six months or one year before a person was allowed to be nominated.

He said intending candidates now just had to pay K1,000 to be nominated.