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Deputy Prime Minister and Immigration Minister John Rosso who witnessed the swearing in ceremony of new Citizenship Advisory Committee (CAC) yesterday at Government House in Port Moresby said the new members will ensure the backlogs of citizenship applications are cleared.

“I congratulate Honourable Marsh Narewec on his appointment as the Chairman of the CAC, and Honourable Alexander Orme on his appointment as the Deputy Chairman of the CAC,” Rosso said.

“Going forward, now that the CAC is fully established, the CAC Hearings can resume to clear the backlog of citizenship applications.”

“There are currently over 600 citizenship applications awaiting CAC deliberation. This includes naturalization, dual citizenship as well as West Papua applications.”

“It is important to note that not all applications submitted will be granted automatically. Applications for citizenship for the various pathways will be thoroughly assessed and screened to ensure that PNG is granting citizenship to suitable persons, and that these people of outstanding character will contribute meaningfully to our country.”

The Citizenship Advisory Committee is a constitutional entity established by Section 75 of the Constitution. The role of the CAC is to deliberate on citizenship matters or applications as formally lodged through the PNG Immigration and Citizenship Services Authority, and provide advice and recommendations to the Minister responsible to decide on.

The CAC comprises of four permanent members and one ad hoc member for each province in the country. The quorum for a CAC Hearing is three permanent members. The other two permanent members of the CAC are by default, the Chief Migration Officer Stanis Hulahau, and the Secretary for Justice and Attorney General Dr. Eric Kwa who were formally appointed in April last year.

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