The National, Monday March 3rd, 2014
THE increase in campaign financing in the 2012 general election indicates the need for more funds for political events, a report says.
A report on campaign financing titled Money in politics: A campaign finance monitoring report on the Papua New Guinea 2012 national election was produced by Caritas PNG.
“This report shows that much still needs to be done to better address campaign finance issues in PNG,” Caritas PNG director Raymond Ton says.
The report suggests the increase of money used in politics creates a breeding ground for campaign debts to be paid back in the form of political favors, a practice that undermines the rule of law.
Ton said Caritas PNG took on the challenge of leading the first campaign finance monitoring project in PNG to contribute to monitoring efforts for the country’s general election.
“Advocacy and awareness are needed to generate more dialogue and collaboration among various stakeholders,” Ton said.
“A sustainable public awareness of the role of money in politics and governance is important for campaign finance reform in PNG.”
The report says the challenge for PNG is to find ways to balance the need for a sustainable financial base for parties with the wider public interest of limiting corruption and avoiding undue influence in politics.
“Citizens must be conscious of how politicians use their money during elections and election campaigns,” it said.