A WOMAN leader in New Ireland province was appointed acting Deputy Governor in the caretaker provincial executive council last Thursday.
Florence Stocken, the appointed women’s representative in the provincial assembly, was appointed to her new position by Governor Sir Julius Chan.
Her appointment to the second most senior political post was the first such honour given to women leaders in the province.
Sir Julius commissioned Mrs Stocken immediately after he appointed the only two women assembly representatives to his new-look caretaker PEC and delegated them chairmanship portfolios.
Mrs Stocken – as acting Deputy Governor – also becomes chairman of social sector responsible for education, health, religion, youth and community affairs while her colleague, the appointed churches representative, Philomena Jonah, took charge of the law and order sector.
Sir Julius, who assumed all the other chairmanship portfolios, moved quickly to make these adjustments to resolve a possible stalemate in the governance process after the provincial assembly revoked the appointments of LLG presidents in the assembly, a process which automatically displaced the PEC because the presidents were also appointed to the PEC with chairmanship portfolios.
This came only a week after the New Ireland provincial assembly entertained the motion for their revocation in compliance with the amendments to the Organic Law that outlawed them from involvement in the provincial assemblies.