Thursday, February 23, 2012

Marape resigns from NA party

Source: Highlands news, Post Courier, February 21, 2012
By PORENI UMAU
TARI-Pori MP James Marape yesterday announced his resignation from the National Alliance (NA) Party.
When announcing his decision to cut ties from the NA Party an emotional Mr Marape expressed sadness for a party where he was a senior member, and rose to deputy leader of the party and was a senior minister.
But he said that duties as chairman of the Hela Transitional Authority had taken precedence over his own personal political interest.
Mr Marape said that his resignation was accepted by the Grand Chief Sir Michael Somare during the NA meeting last Sunday.
He then requested for the Speaker to find him a place as an Independent MP, with views of working closely with Prime Minister O’Neill’s Government while awaiting formalities of his resignation to be completed by NA and the Office of Political Parties and Candidates.
He has also indicated support for the Peoples National Congress (PNC) Party.
“I am indicating a strong support for the PNC Party because of the Prime Minister O’Neill’s view on key infrastructures in the Southern Highlands Province and Hela, including the long outstanding road construction and sealing from Mendi to Kopiago,” Mr Marape said.
He also said that with his role as chairman of Hela, he must enter into discussions with chairman of the National Executive Council and Prime Minister, which has caused his move to take his place at the negotiation table for Hela.
“They are important outstanding issues like discussing the splits of Hela and Southern Highlands assets. This includes the proceeds from the Liquefied Natural Gas project which is currently under Southern Highlands Provincial Government,” Mr Marape said.
He said that these discussions must take place before the writs were issued in April.
“Because of these outstanding Hela issues, I now take my place in the middle bench to offer support to Prime Minster Peter O’Neill,” he said.
Mr Marape was education minister in the former somare -Abal Government

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