The National, Friday, April 29, 2011
THERE is a People’s National Congress party branch in New Ireland, contrary to what its national president claims, New Ireland branch spokesman Levi Paset said yesterday.
He said a party branch was set up in the province in 2006 under the leadership of prominent former Kavieng MP Ben Micah.
Paset said the statement by Mary Karo “is understandable given her ignorance of many issues relating to the PNC Party since the 2002 elections when the party was nearly destroyed by internal struggles”.
“She was never around when Micah and other leaders helped Peter O’Neill assume leadership and control of the party to become leader of the opposition.
“Karo and the PNC national executive must acknowledge Micah’s critical role in the amalgamation of five smaller parties with the PNC that consolidated O’Neill’s leadership of the party in 2004 and the opposition,” he said
“Needless to say, Karo would not be where she is if O’Neill was not leader of PNC and a senior minister in government,” Paset said.
He said Micah was a co-founder of the new PNC party and his contributions “cannot merely be brushed aside for the convenience of pleasing the National Alliance party or fear of being sacked”.
“We have maintained a branch which does not have any effective link with Karo’s executive, like many branches in other provinces which did not have any effective link with the national executive of Karo until recently.”
Paset said the decision by the PNC leadership, members and supporters to merge with the People’s Progressive Party in New Ireland aimed at consolidating the political shift and to form a coalition at the provincial and district levels.