We are not rigging elections: Pangu leader Marape

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Pangu party is not rigging the Papua New Guinea elections says party leader James Marape.

He said if Pangu had rigged the elections, it would have made a clean sweep of all 118 seats, including Maprik Open in East Sepik, which party strongman, John Simon has lost.

“People have been falsely claiming that Pangu is rigging the elections, that there are extra ballot papers and making all other manner of lies,” PM Marape said from Wewak, where he is currently in camp to form Government.

“If one of my key PANGU leaders can lose, in elimination count, this dispels the myths and unnecessary suspicions and rumours fuelled by losing candidates, and those who are struggling to collect votes, that Pangu is carrying out illegal activities in the elections.

“If one of my strongest MPs and supporters can lose his seat that has been held by us for many years through the late Sir Pita Lus and then John Simon that should indicate to rumor-mongers that we do not engage in illegal activities.”

Marape said the voting environment was basically the same in all electorates of the country – whether it be Electoral Roll, logistics, counting venue and others – and was not done in a way to favor one party.

“There are so many innuendos and inferences, especially those promoted by losing candidates or those who are not polling well, to delay counting,” he said.

“In Maprik, my PANGU strongman, John Simon has accepted the result. In Rabaul, long-serving MP Dr Allan Marat has accepted his defeat by three votes graciously.

“If there is any place to dispute the election results, then the Court of Disputed Returns is the place to go, and not to delay the process.

“Scrutineers are there to note discrepancies, and if these are not addressed in the counting area, then candidates have to right to take this to court.

“I appeal to disgruntled candidates and their supporters not to engage in acts of arson, or destroy ballot papers, because of their frustrations.

“It is shameful to do this, especially when you are ‘highly-educated’ and ‘civilised’ but do not have the votes, in front of your children and families. Allow the counting process to be completed as we are time bound to return writs by the end of this week’ he added.

SOURCE: LOOP PNG/PACNEWS