Polye can remain in office, court says

The National, Tuesday July 12th, 2016

THE Supreme Court has ruled that Kandep MP Don Polye can remain in office until his application for review is determined by the court.
Justice Allan David, Justice Jacinta Murray and Justice Fraser Pitpit unanimously stayed a National Court order, which set aside the declaration of Polye as Kandep MP by the retaining officer on July 13, 2012 during the general election.
The higher court granted a “fresh” application by Polye seeking a stay of Justice Joseph Yagi’s order on May 2 in the national court, which set aside the declaration.
The court ruled that Polye will remain as Kandep MP until the final hearing and outcome of the application for review.
The National Court order, which set aside the declaration of Polye, was made in an election petition filed by candidate Alfred Manase.
Justice Yagi on May 2 upheld a ground in the election petition relating to five disputed boxes that were rejected by the retaining officer and ordered that the declaration of Polye as Kandep MP be set aside.
Polye and Manase separately filed two applications in the Supreme Court seeking leave to review the lower court’s decision.
Justice Terence Higgins, sitting as a lone Supreme Court judge, granted leave to both applications on May 24.
He ordered a stay to the decision that set aside the declaration.
Manase, who was aggrieved by the decision of Justice Higgins, filed a notice of motion on June 3 to challenge that decision.
The full court last Friday set aside that decision after it found that a lone judge had no jurisdiction to stay an order made by the National Court.