Transparency International Papua New Guinea (TIPNG) welcomes the Government’s actions to publicly advertise the position of the Electoral Commissioner this week.
This action comes on the back of TIPNG raising concerns over the importance of having competent and stable leadership within the PNG Electoral Commission (PNGEC), if we are to have any chance of delivering a reasonable National General Election in 2022.
The success of the 2022 National General Elections will greatly depend on our efforts to restore the public trust in the PNGEC, and we can start by ensuring we undertake a transparent and rigorous process to appoint a leader that can restore integrity to the office and the organisation.
“On June 2nd, during the Moresby Northwest By-election, TIPNG drew the Government’s attention to the need for the Electoral Commission Appointments Committee, chaired by the Prime Minister, to convene as a matter of urgency to recruit and appoint a permanent head of the PNGEC.
On Tuesday 29th June the position was advertised by the Committee in the newspaper with applications closing on Friday 6th August 2021,” said the Chair of TIPNG, Peter Aitsi in a statement.
“The people of Papua New Guinea rightly expect that the four Members of the Committee; namely the Prime Minister, the Leader of the Opposition, the Chair of the Permanent Parliamentary Committee on Appointments, and the Chair of the Public Services Commission, will commit to safeguard and protect the integrity of the appointments process.
Along with the appointment of a head of the Electoral Commission, immediate efforts must be directed to update electoral roll, this is equally critical,” said Mr Aitsi.
TIPNG is calling on the Prime Minister and Government to give priority to 2022 National General Elections by restoring the integrity of the administration of the PNGEC and to have the existing roll made accessible to the public so voters can ensure that their names are listed, while protecting the enrollment process for new voters coming on to the roll.