Support for autonomy welcomed

Islands, Normal

The National, Tuesday, May 24, 2011

THE people of Bougainville are singing the praises of the National Coordination Office of Bougainville Affairs for its role in educating and disseminating information on the Bougainville Peace Agreement and other fundamental aspects of their bid to achieve autonomy.
Arawa district manager, Lucy Traverts was among those who thanked the office for breaking down the information in the peace deal.
The office had been vocal in establishing peace in the once war-torn region.
Office acting director Ellison Towallom is the man behind the scene in paving the way for the future Autonomous Region of Bougainville.
Educating the people is one of the fundamental functions of the office, which aims to prepare the people to make wise choices when voting in the referendum for autonomy in 2015.
The referendum will decide whether Bougainville will remain a part of Papua New Guinea or break away to become an independent nation.
A copy of the peace agreement says the three main pillars are autonomy, referendum and a weapons disposal plan.
These three issues are the core of the agreement, which had not been made clear or explained in simple language to the people until the office took the lead in doing so.
Towallom said the office was the coordinating body and link between Papua New Guinea and the Autonomous Bougainville Government.