The National, Friday 27th January 2012
By YVONNE HAIP
JOSEPH Kunukunu has been elected by 23 councillors from the South Wiru LLG in Pangia, Southern Highlands as their council president.
There was a tussle between Kunukunu and Cr Wambi Nondi over the position after they were both elected in August 2008 during two separate meetings.
But the national court in Mt Hagen ruled on January 12 that there was a vacancy in the president’s seat and a new election be conducted in accordance with the LLG Administration Act 1997, and the standing orders.
Justice Collin Makail found that there were serious breaches of law and both were not entitled to be declared president.
The court nullified the election of Kunukunu as president and also refused to recognise Nondi’s appointment.
Nondi sought an alternative relief which was to elect a new president which Justice Makail found fair and appropriate in the circumstances.
As a result, the 23 councillors, including two female representatives, met yesterday (Wednesday) in Mendi and unanimously voted for Kunukunu.
Nondi and 12 other councilors were absent at the meeting.
Mendi district court clerk and commissioner of oaths Kapa Dilini, provincial legal officer Peter Sapu, deputy governor and Karinz LLG president, Kengel Olpa and members of the police force witnessed the election.
Kunukunu thanked the councilors for their trust in his leadership.
He urged Nondi and the other councilors not to work in isolation but to help him with their advice.