The National, Monday 20th August, 2012
By YVONNE HAIP
WESTERN Highlands Governor Paias Wingti says he has comfort in the formation of the current government because it has a good speaker of parliament.
Speaking last Thursday during a luncheon held at the Highlander Hotel in Mt Hagen, Western Highlands, to commemorate India’s 66th year of independence, Wingti was sure of a smooth parliament with Finchhafen MP Theo Zurenuoc as speaker.
Zurenuoc was appointed the ninth speaker on Aug 3 by an overwhelming majority 88-17 over Talasea MP Francis Marus.
The speaker calls and chairs parliament sessions, and Wingti, referring to the continuous government reshuffles, said with Zurenuoc, certain incidents in the past might not be repeated.
“I have comfort in the government of the day because we have a good speaker and this will ensure there are checks and balances,” he said.
The former prime minister, who is a member of the coalition government, said the country needed credible leaders who would represent the people in a democratic way.
“Democracy is the people’s right and actions of leaders will
determine the future of this country.”
The People’s Democratic Movement party leader also congratulated India on its 66th independence during the occasion which was witnessed by Indian High Commissioner Dr A M Gondane.
Gondane said the two countries had similarities because India, like PNG, was a rich country but the difference between the poor and rich people was great.
He said after 66 years, the country still had a long way to go but was confident that after 100 years of being independent in 2047, “India would not be the same”.
He said one thing he admired about PNG was the freedom of the media which played a vital role in developing the young nation.
“The freedom of the press should be maintained at all costs, even if it looks like it is hindering development,” he said.