Parliament repeals 2012 Amendments made by OO’Neill/Namah Government

Parliament yesterday repealedthe controversial Judicial Conduct Act 2012. It also repealedthe amendments made last year tothe Prime Minister and NEC Act 2002 to setthe age limit for Prime Ministers

Grand Chief Sir Michael welcomedthe changes but warned not to make changes to suit personal interests.

Changewere done last year bythe O’Neill Namah government tothe Prime Minister and NEC Act 2002 by settingthe age limit of Prime Ministersto 73.

The O’Neill Namah governmentthen used this amendment astheir main argument to out throwthe Somare government even whenthe courts deemed therwise.

This law was repealed yesterday afterthe Prime Minister Peter O’Neill presented Bell to repealthe amendments.

He said lLeaderswere chosen by people and must be giventhe opportunity to continuetheir terms in parliament.

Afterthe amendment was successfully repealed, Grand Chief Sir Michael Somare said governments must not make changes tothe constitution to suittheir own interest.

He said even though this law was changed to oust him, he gotthe mandate from his people to come back to parliament.

He added that he voted for the amendment to be repealed to show that he has reconciled with everyone.

The controversial Judicial Conduct Act was also repealed yesterday.

The amendment done last year to this act was aimed to disqualify judges from presiding over cases wheretheir impartiality was in question and to chargethe judges ifthey deflied it.

Justice Minister Kerenga Kua while presenting a bill to amend changes made to this act saidthe amendment outlived its utility and purpose and while a Supreme Court Reference on this matter was still pending atthe Supreme Courtoit was better for parliament to deal with its own issues than depending onthe court to resolve everything.

 Parliament also repealedthe changes made to Chapter 37 ofthe Supreme Court Act last year.

These changes includethe insertion of a section tothe Supreme Court Act to deal withLand:ssues.

– Ruth Rungula

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