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June 23, 2021

More Bills Passed

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The government bulldozed through four more bills in parliament today.


They were the District Development Authority, Independent Commission against Corruption, Appointment of Certain Offices and the Dual Citizenship Bills.

Prime Minister Peter O’Neill made statements for the District Development Authority and ICAC bills, whilst Public Service Minister Sir, Puka Temu, made the Appointment of certain offices statement and Acting Foreign Affairs Minister and Minister for Justice and Attorney General, Kerenga Kua, made the reading for the Dual citizenship bill.


No member of parliament opposed the passing of these 4 bills today, not even the lone opposition member, Madang Governor Jim Kas, who was obviously outnumbered.


The house voted 91 to nil for both the District Development Authority and Independent Commission against Corruption.


Prime Minister Peter O’Neill said the district development authority bill was made in the best interest of the people, in terms of service delivery.


Mr. O’Neill said that a commissioner and 2 deputy commissioners will be appointed to run the affairs of the ICAC.


He said his government is serious about combatting corruption in the country, and this commission will do just that.


92 MPs voted for the dual citizenship bill, nil against.


However, prior to passing the Dual Citizenship bill, members of parliament questioned Acting Foreign Affairs Minister and Minister for Justice and Attorney General, Kerenga Kua, on its provisions.


They said strict provisions should be in place so that PNG does not open the flood gates to foreigners.


State Enterprise Minister, Ben Micah, argued that those applying to be PNG citizens must not contest or hold public offices.


East Sepik Governor Grand Chief Sir, Micheal Somare, asked for leniency on missionaries.


Kundiawa Gembogl MP Tobias Kulang urged the national government to empower and support more Papua New Guineans to venture into business and land development rather than giving more rights and privileges to foreigners under this bill.


Minister Kua promised the members that strict provisions were in place, saying PNG will only partner with countries that are willing to allow Papua New Guineans to become citizens in their countries.


Public Service Minister Sir Puka Temu’s Constitutional Amendment to the Appointment of Certain Offices Law 2013 also got the backing of the 92 MPs present in the house today.

This law will select and recommend, through merit based selection, departmental heads.


It also gives more power to the Provincial Administrators to run the affairs of their provinces, and districts.


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