Papua New Guinea Governor General, Sir Bob Dadae, has made a strong appeal to the National Government to reform the electoral process before the 2027 national elections.
And he has called for preparations for electronic or biometric voting to be established early.
Sir Bob said this was basically to improve the tenet of democracy, restore transparency and ensure future elections are violence-free.
He said he has been updated on the 2022 election process where there were discrepancies, citing the 2022 National General Elections, also encountered its share of problems and that the way forward now was for the government to reform the electoral process before 2027.
“To improve the basic tenet of our democracy, our election system must be reviewed to restore transparency so that equal opportunity is given to our people to independently exercise their democratic rights in future elections,” he said.
“Key focus areas for the government include Electoral Reforms, Economic Reforms with more focus on Agriculture and Import Replacement efforts, Infrastructure connectivity to facilitate Economic and Social Development.
“The Common Roll is the principal document that ensures that all who are eligible to vote exercise their democratic right and that the process of elections is assured with unquestionable integrity.
“It was unfortunate that many eligible voters could not cast their votes due to the absence of their names. I suggest that power to update and maintain prudent records be decentralised to the provinces.
“We need to ensure that future elections are violence free. We need to explore options on biometric identification and electronic voting. We must set new standards and hold ourselves to account through the adoption and execution of these standards.
“Our constituents expect this from us, and we must deliver to their expectations, and provide the right leadership in the delivery of basic goods and services.
“You are all privileged to be in this House when our country crosses the line of 50 years of nationhood.
“Our forebearers had the foresight to chart important pathway for our country with the establishment of important institutions, passed foundational legislations, established key international relationships and set in place broad parameters that created this nation.
“It is now incumbent upon each of you to determine and deliver important reforms that must set a solid foundation for the next fifty years.
“It is especially incumbent on the Marape/Rosso government to lead strongly and establish the right development parametres to get over the line within the next three years, before we celebrate our 50th Anniversary as an Independent nation in 2025. Let us do this for our people,” he said.
SOURCE: POST COURIER/PACNEWS