People’s Party splits from govt, joins rivals

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By Rebecca Kuku
THE People’s Party has broken away from the Government coalition and joined the group of MPs challenging the leadership of Prime Minister Peter O’Neill.
The party’s parliamentary wings consists of Jiwaka Governor Dr William Tongamp, Enga Governor Sir Peter Ipatas and Esa’ala MP Davis Steven.
Party leader Tongamp said they had joined the group camped at Laguna Hotel in Port Moresby led by James Marape and Opposition Leader Patrick Pruaitch.
“I know it may not be much as we have only three members in the party but we are happy to add to the number and make a difference,” Tongamp said.
“Because people have spoken and expressed their desire for change so as leaders we must do what is best for our people.”
Sir Peter said they had left the ruling coalition government to ensure that the alternate one was led by new leaders who would always “put the people first in their hearts”.
“The road is already there. If we put the people in our hearts, then nothing will go wrong,” he said.
“I have served for more than 40 years as a mandated leader and I can tell you, once you put the people first, nothing will go wrong.”
Sir Peter said it was time for a change and he understood that times were changing.
Tari-Pori MP James Marape welcomed the party to the camp.
“It is now time for transition. We must make way for and guide our young leaders to change the course of this country,” he said.