Petition case against Wingti set for hearing

National, Normal

The National, Tuesday August 6th, 2013


THE election petition filed by Tom Olga against Western Highlands Governor Paias Wingti will be heard in October.

This follows a decision by the National Court in Mt Hagen last Friday to reject an application filed by Wingti’s counsel Alfred Manase to disqualify Justice Collin Makail from hearing the case.

Makail dismissed the application with costs. He will hear the case on Oct 14.

On April 2, Manase had filed an application asking Makail to disqualify himself from hearing the case on the grounds of apprehension of bias.

Manase claimed that Makail’s associate Charlie William had told a third party that the judge had pre-determined the petition in favour of Olga.

Three witnesses – Mathew Philip, John Mek and Ray Paul – had told the court that William informed them that case would go in favour of Olga.

The three said William told them that as an associate of the judge, he knew what decisions he would make.

“There must be evidence to establish that the associate said that I decided the petition in favour of Olga,” Makail said.