th of May. Dr. Marat’s comments come after a media conference by the Parliamentary Clerk’s office in which it was stated the vote of no confidence will not happen this month if parliament doesn’t sit for a full week. Details are important in this parliamentary process. If parliament does not adjourn, on the 28th of May, the Private Business Committee of which the Speaker is Chairman will meet on the 29th to decide whether the vote should proceed. However, if the speaker decides to adjourn prematurely, then the vote could be delayed until parliament does sit for a full week. While the processes are relatively straight forward, weaving through the multiple layers of strategy leaves many in the game of PNG politics short-winded and disorientated. Last week, while the opposition filed a notice of motion for a vote of no confidence, the Government removed opposition MPs on the Private Business committee responsible for deciding if votes of no confidence should proceed. Tari-Pori MP, James Marape, called it a “ploy” by the government to derail the vote. Dr. Marat has further cautioned the speaker to remain independent of the influence of the Government side of the house through the Leader of Government Business.
“The parliament is the territory of the speaker. The Speaker rules parliament. Not the government. We talk about the separation of powers between the executive government, the parliament and the judiciary. They must at all times observe the doctrine of the separation of powers.”But what appears to be a contradiction still has not been resolved or set aside legally by the government. In 2016, then opposition leader, Don Polye, sought a supreme court reference. The supreme court then said that any notice of motion for a vote of no confidence motion is of national importance and must be allowed by the speaker. Dr. Marat says since 2016, there has been no supreme court decision that has overruled the Polye reference.
“Let me caution the speaker that he is judicially bound to allow the vote of no confidence motion to proceed because it is not of parochial interests but of national importance.“Any decision by the speaker that goes against the Supreme Court ruling will be in contempt of court.”]]>