5 Feb 2004

PNG's registrar of political parties under investigation

8:05 am on 5 February 2004

Papua New Guinea's registrar of political parties is being investigated for breaches of the Leadership Code.

Paul Bengo may have breached the code by not referring eight MPs who voted against party resolutions to the Ombudsman Commission.

Under the Integrity Laws MPs who are members of registered parties are bound to vote in line with party resolutions on any amendments to the constitution.

However in a vote last November the eight MPs voted with the Government and against their parties wishes on the planned amendment on the grace period for votes of no confidence.

The Post Courier reports the Chief Ombudsman Ila Geno saying Mr Bengo appears to have no right to exercise any discretion in the matter and if he fails to comply it is a breach of his constitutional duty and could amount to misconduct in office.