The National, Wednesday 19th of February, 2014
ONE of PNG’s first legal eagles and former Kairuku-Hiri MP Joseph Stanislaus Aoae died over the weekend at his home in Port Moresby. He was 73.
Aoae, from Yule Island, Central, spent the first decade of his career in the justice system after being the first Papua New Guinean to be admitted to the Queensland (Australia) and PNG bar in 1968.
In 1975, he was appointed secretary for justice and played a part in the lead-up to independence.
Three years later, his desire to serve the people of Kairuku-Hiri saw him contest and win the seat in the election. It was the first of three successful consecutive elections.
During his time as an MP, Aoae held ministerial portfolios as forestry minister from 1980-83 and education minister in 1987-88.
He lost the Kairuku-Hiri seat to Moi Avei in the 1992 elections.
Outside law and politics, Aoae was a dab hand at chess. He was, in fact, PNG’s first national chess champion.
He retired in 1996.
For his years of service and dedication to his people and country, Aoae was awarded the Diamond Jubilee Award in December of 2012. A month after he lost his wife to breast cancer.
Aoae is survived by his four children, eight grandchildren and two great-grandchildren.