Sir Paulias: I am now an unemployed ‘lapun’

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The National – Thursday, December 16, 2010

AN unemployed lapun – that is how elder statesman Sir Paulias Matane described himself yesterday.
Sir Paulias, who was made “redundant” as governor-general last Friday by a Supreme Court ruling in Port Moresby, said this during a seminar at Kokopo hosted by the East New Britain Students Association from the University of PNG.
“I am no longer governor-general, as of noon on Tuesday,” he said.
“Whatever is decided by the court stays as it is and we should wait to see what happens next,” he added.
“I have served my country loyally and faithfully, with love, for 55 years and will still continue to do so.
“I am here to serve people with love, real love from deep within my heart,” Sir Paulias told an attentive audience.
“Everything I have done for PNG, I have done out of love and not money.”
To inject humour into this speech, he said he was now “an unemployed lapun”, just like every other person his age – 74.
Sir Paulias said he rather not comment on the Supreme Court nullifying his appointment of June 25 for a second term as vice-regal.
“The best thing to thing to do is to wait and see what will happen next.”
Lady Kaludia was with her husband at the seminar.
Meanwhile, a Hela leader and former politician Sir Matiabe Yuwi yesterday indicated his interest for the job of governor-general.
The former Tari-Pori MP (1968-82) made known his intentions and said: “I believe I am a strong candidate for the job.
“I was responsible for drawing up the constitution in 1970 and 1971.
“I was part of the constitutional planning committee that was chaired by John Momis. Our lawyer was (late) Bernard Narokobi.”
Sir Matiabe said he had knowledge of the government and bureaucratic system as he was a medical orderly and local level government president before becoming a three-term MP.