Numbers Game Begin as Government and Opposition Consolidate Numbers Prior to Vote Of No Confidence

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By Meriba Tulo – EMTV News, Port Moresby

The numbers game has begun for both sides of parliament to consolidate support for a looming vote of no confidence. yesterday morning, the Opposition announced that West Sepik Governor Tony Wouwou, had broken ranks with Government, and joined them. According to Opposition Leader, Patrick Pruaitch, they expect more members to defect from Government in the coming days.

The Ministerial resignations in the last three weeks have turned the attention of many Papua New Guineans back to national politics.
The actions by former Finance Minister, James Marape, former Attorney General, Davis Steven, and most recently the resignation of a handful of Highlands Governors from the ruling People National Congress. All these decisions on the eve of the next parliament sitting, which begins next week.

Yesterday, April 29, the Opposition formally announced their numbers – 26, as they prepare for the May Parliament sitting. According to Opposition Leader, Patrick Pruaitch, they are expecting more – with the Opposition urging those in Government to make a move to elect a new Prime Minister.

Whilst calling for Members from Government to join the Opposition, Shadow Attorney General Kerenga Kua, also outlined some reasons why the Government had lost the respect of the people, as well as Parliamentarians – more especially Governors in resource project areas.

As it is a numbers’ game from here-on until Parliament meets next Tuesday for the May sitting – Vanimo Green MP, Belden Namah, revealed he was spearheading talks with several groupings within Government ranks.

What transpires over the next eight days will be interesting, with the Numbers game well and truly on – a game that will determine whether PNG’s elected leaders choose a new Prime Minister on the floor of parliament in the coming weeks.

However, the question remains as to who the alternate Prime Minister will be – a question that was put to the Opposition Leader.

Meriba Tulo

is a Senior Reporter and Presenter and currently anchors Resource PNG as well as EMTV's daily National News.

Meriba Tulo