By Meriba Tulo – EMTV News, Port Moresby
The Joint Supervisory Body meeting between Officials from the National Government, and the Autonomous Bougainville Government has been deferred and scheduled to take place in Arawa today (June 14). This latest deferral was confirmed by Minister Assisting the Prime Minister on Bougainville Affairs, William Samb.
With less than a year to go before the target date for Bougainville’s Referendum on its political future, both the National Government, and the Autonomous Bougainville Government, have on several occasions, reaffirmed their commitment to this important process. An important avenue for dialogue has been through the Joint Supervisory Body meetings.
Given the approaching target date of the Referendum, both governments had agreed to staging the next JSB meeting in Arawa, Bougainville.
This next meeting of the JSB was to have confirmed some important decisions surrounding the referendum, including the all-important question, or questions, to be put to the region’s citizens. During the recently concluded Bougainville Referendum Forum, Prime Minister Peter O’Neill reaffirmed his commitment to the JSB, which had been scheduled for tomorrow, June 14th.
However, yesterday (June 12), Minister Assisting the Prime Minister, William Samb, confirmed the deferral of the JSB yet again – This time, the JSB has been scheduled for the end of this month, in Arawa. According to Minister Samb, this is to allow for the Joint Technical Meetings between officials from both the National Government and ABG, which will in turn dictate the agendas to be out to leaders from both governments. The JTT meets in Port Moresby this Friday (June 15).