It's not even worth daydreaming about who should or shouldn't become PM when the corruption to buy votes and loyalties has already started full blast. Candidates are buying out or intimidating voters. PNG's political mafia chiefs have already started bribing candidates to switch parties. We are witnessing what will be the most corrupt election in PNG's history now well underway.
PC News Monday -21st May , 2007
Defectors on report
THE election of any candidate jumping parties would be declared null and void, the Registrar of Political Parties and Candidates Paul Bengo has warned.
Mr Bengo’s warning follows a complaint three members registered with PNG Party which had also paid their nomination fees and given them additional funds had defected to other parties at the time of nomination.
Party leader and former prime minister Sir Mekere Morauta registered an official complaint with Electoral Commissioner Andrew Trawen and Mr Bengo over the behaviour of the three candidates.
Mr Bengo said should the three candidates or any one of them, win their seats, their election would be declared null and void.
Mr Bengo said he would also consider asking the police fraud squad to investigate the matter for possible criminal prosecution.
The three candidates were former defence minister and Sumkar Open MP in Madang Province, Mathew Gubag, Bernard Kull (West Sepik provincial seat) and William Roimb (Anglimp South Wahgi Open) in the Western Highlands Province.
Sir Mekere said in his letter all three were financial members of the PNG Party and had collected Forms 29 and 30 for their nominations. They also received their nomination fees and additional substantial funds from the party.
However, Sir Mekere said at the time of nomination the three men defected to other parties without informing PNG Party.
It is understood Mr Kull received K21,000 from PNG Party but nominated as a People’s Action Party candidate. Mr Gubag is understood to have received K10,000 and then nominated as a People’s National Congress candidate and Mr Roimb received K13,000 and nominated as a United Resources Party candidate.
Mr Bengo said the conduct of the three candidates was in breach of the Organic Law on the Integrity of Political Parties and Candidates. He said he would request Sir Mekere to provide further documentation on the matter to the commission for the Integrity of Political Parties. Mr Bengo said his office and the Electoral Commissioner would enforce the law “with impunity.”
“The Organic Law on the Integrity of Political Parties and Candidates is specific about the conduct and behaviour of candidates and political parties. Any breaches will not be tolerated by the Commission for the Integrity of Political Parties and Candidates,” said Mr Bengo.
Mr Bengo said it was the wish of Parliament and the people that political stability must be maintained and it was his intention to ensure he enforced the law. “There will be no exceptions,” Mr Bengo said warning candidates and parties to abide by the law or face the consequences.
Meanwhile, the public officer and general secretary for the People’s National Congress, Dominic Sengi said Mr Gubag had also received funds from the party.
Mr Sengi revealed he had told former Morobe premier Utula Samana, who is a candidate for the Lae Open seat, to reimburse PNC funds given to him for the elections. Mr Sengi said he spoke to Mr Samana after he (Samana) nominated as an independent candidate.