The National, Tuesday 14th May 2013
THE Government is expected to introduce a raft of legislation to combat rising violent crimes in the country as well as to strengthen the political system in the course of the new parliamentary session which begins today, Prime Minister Peter O’Neill said.
A series of violent crimes, including the murder of a tourist and rape of a researcher recently triggered outrage and sparked calls for the introduction of the death penalty.
The Government responded by approving a series of proposed legislations which, if passed by Parliament, would see the death penalty implemented and the penalty for rape and armed robbery increased drastically.
Tougher penalties will also be introduced for drug abuse and trading hours for alcohol cut back.
O’Neill told a caucus meeting of his People’s National Congress party last night that he expected debate on the legislations to be exhaustive.
“The proposed increase in time for the notice to be given will allow Parliament ample time to debate the performance of a prime minister and the government, so that members are satisfied that they are making the right decision,” he said in a statement.
O’Neill said he had also informed Cabinet ministers to present papers on the progress of the implementation of the Government’s policies.
“I expect as many ministers as possible to present papers on the progress of implementation in their departments since we all signed the delivery pledges early this year,” he said.
Parliament is expected to sit for at least two weeks.
O’Neill is scheduled to visit a national haus krai organised by Women Arise PNG at Sir John Guise Stadium in Port Moresby tomorrow and receive their “call to action” statement.