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Port Moresby
January 19, 2021
News

Village Court Act Amended

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The Village Court Bill of 2013 was amended today.

 

The bill seeks to modernize the Village Courts Act of 1989 to accommodate changing relationships, conflicts and issues in rural areas. The Act aims to:

  • Strengthen the role Village Courts have in protecting the rights of women and children and addressing violence in PNG Communities.
  • Ensure that Village Courts comply with Constitutional requirements, including those protecting the rights of people accessing the courts.
  • Set limits to the number of officials appointed to each village court to make it manageable and cost effective, ensuring speedier process of appointments and revocations.
  • Overcome ambiguity and conflict with other legislation and address grey areas in the legislation for efficient administration of Village Courts.
  • Clarify Ministerial responsibility for the proclamation of Village Courts and their suspension, as well as for the abolition and appointment; suspension and revocation of Village Magistrates, Chairman and deputy chairman.
  • Limit the tenure of office for officials and provide for the review of the performance of these officials at three year intervals.
  • Strengthen the role of District Courts in their supervisory roles, in appeals and review processes, and review and endorsement of imprisonment orders of village courts to comply with the law.     
 

The bill was also passed 75 to nil.

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