Somare: bureaucrats should serve interest of PNG
The Grand Chief Sir Michael Somare today called on all government officials to carry out their duties without being coerced or influenced by desperate people who fraudulently want to obtain the mandate of their people.
Sir Michael said, “I have been receiving reports not only from my home province of East Sepik but from other electorates around the country of various disruptions in the election process.
Some of the examples of complaints have been that presiding officers did not sign off on ballot papers, electoral officials have not turned up at different voting sites and general disputes that have caused delays in polling. Others have been that inner seals have been broken on ballot boxes or boxes have been moved to undesignated areas.
“It is important for all government officials to know that they serve the interest of the people of Papua New Guinea and not rogues that are trying to determine the outcome of the electoral process through illegal means.
“Government officials cannot be seen to betaking sides with anyone but must carry out their duties according to proper process and electoral guidelines. I am making this call to all public servants at this time; not only electoral officials but our security forces as well.
“It is critical to note that every citizen that votes knows the importance of their vote and officials must respect the rights these voters have to free choice.
“Therefore, I call once again on all candidates to respect the law and work closely with each other including coordinators and scrutineers to ensure that counting takes place in an orderly manner without further disruption.
“Too many illegal activities have taken place over the last couple of months for us to play around with our future by manipulating electoral results. I know people of this country want an end to the corruption of process that has been taking place.
“Therefore the onus is on all government officials to carryout their duties diligently and according to process so that the interest of the future of all Papua New Guineans is served,” said Sir Michael.
M T SOMARE GCMG GCL CH CF KStJ