By Meriba Tulo – EMTV News, Port Moresby
As part of National Research Institute’s Bougainville Referendum Research project, a seminar was held on Julu 3rd to go through a draft research report into possible scenarios for future governance arrangements in the island region.
Among those present, Bougainville Affairs Minister, Sir Puka Temu, and ABG Minister for Bougainville Peace Agreement Implementation, Albert Punghau.
Researcher, Professor Matt Qvortrup, was in Port Moresby to present an executive summary into his report, titled “Possible Scenarios for Future Governance Arrangements in Bougainville”, this report, one of several commissioned by National Research Institute through its Bougainville referendum Research Project.
According to professor Qvortrup, whilst the report has focused on choices between government systems, economic costs and related issues – it has been acknowledged that what is most needed is continued dialogue between both the National Government and Autonomous Bougainville Government in the lead up to, during, and after the referendum.
He says this is important, as the Bougainville Peace Agreement, and subsequent autonomy arrangements have been recognised internationally as one of the best. This report comes at a time when preparations for the upcoming referendum on Bougainville’s political are gaining momentum.
According to ABG Minister for Peace Agreement Implementation, reports such as these provide a good platform for both governments. The National Government has also welcomed the report – although still in its draft stage, some points raised have been taken note of by Bougainville Affairs Minister Sir Puka Temu.
Sir Puka also used the opportunity to announce several decisions by Government in regards to Bougainville in the coming weeks and months.