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Call to set up a post-referendum taskforce committee,PNG leaders told
5:03 pm GMT+12, 05/09/2019, Papua New Guinea

While preparations for Bougainville’s referendum polling and counting are on full steam, the Papua New Guinea Government is now seriously addressing post-referendum issue.
 
National Coordination Office of Bougainville Affairs (NCOBA) boss John Anuma gave a run down together with National Research Institute and Bougainville Referendum Commission to the leaders at Parliament state function room Thursday.
 
Prime Minister James Marape and his Cabinet Ministers, and MPs, including the Speaker Job Pomat, were there for the official briefing in Parliament’s state function room, which was led by Bougainville Affairs Minister Sir Puka Temu.
 
Anuma said that there was now a foundation for the post-referendum taskforce committee that would needed to be set up, with its functions and a way forward for the committee.
 
He said that while the work of this taskforce committee is geared towards the implementation of the Bougainville Peace Agreement, references are also made to the following: PNG Constitution; Organic Law on Peace-building in Bougainville and Bougainville Referendum 2002; and Bougainville Constitution.
 
“The functions will basically be to get both sides together and think ahead/discuss possible scenarios along the two options that would appear on the Referendum Ballot Paper which is greater autonomy and independence, consider/discuss the preparedness of the ABG in light of the referendum choices and discuss the preparedness of the people of Bougainville for the eventual outcome from the referendum, discuss how to manage expectations from the Referendum outcome, consider ways to support the independent work of the BRC, consider ways to support the awareness exercises of the PNG parliament bipartisan committee on Bougainville affairs and the political road show of leaders from both sides and consider or discuss some of the issues that could be deliberated during the consultation period after the referendum,”  Anuma said.
 
Post-referendum support to Bougainville will be the socio-economic package.
 
Bougainville referendum security support, capacity strengthening and resourcing of NCOBA, post-referendum information awareness, completion of draw down process and promote policies to sustain peace and greater power-sharing.
 
Organsiation of meetings to date – four post-referendum taskforce committee meetings since January 2019 and the next meeting will be on this month, including two joint technical meetings.

SOURCE: POST COURIER/PACNEWS


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